2024 U.S. Congress – Republic of Korea National Assembly Exchange Program

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Deadline: April 12, 2024 at 11:59pm EST

Background

The U.S. Congress – Republic of Korea National Assembly Exchange Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and the Republic of Korea National Assembly, is designed to broaden the perspectives of Korean and American young people on: the legislative process, the history of U.S. - Korean relations, and current economic, political, and security aspects of the bilateral relationship.

The program was first created in 1981 by U.S. Representative Ben Gilman and his counterpart in the Republic of Korea National Assembly David Pong. The program is jointly funded by the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and the Republic of Korea National Assembly. The U.S. portion of the program is developed and implemented by Meridian International Center. 

 

Program Description

This joint exchange program combines professional meetings, briefings from government officials and private sector specialists, peer interaction, and cultural activities. Eight Korean university students and young adults and a group leader from the Republic of Korea National Assembly will participate in the U.S. program and an equivalent group from the U.S. will participate in the U.S. and Korea program. 

The Korean and American delegations will spend time together in Washington, DC.  Afterwards, the Americans will depart for Korea, while the Koreans will remain in the U.S. for site visits to other U.S. cities.  At the end of the program, the Korean delegation will return to Korea to reunite with their American counterparts together in Seoul.

Participants

The U.S. delegation consists of 8 American students and young adults between the ages of 21 and 27, selected through a competitive application process. For additional information please check the "Qualifications and Responsibilities.

The Committee on Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Unification of the Republic of Korea National Assembly nominates and selects the Korean students to travel to the U.S. 

Funding            

This is a program of the U.S. Department of State with funding provided by the U.S. Government, administered by Meridian International Center. Participation in this program for the selected members of the U.S. delegation is fully funded by the U.S. Department of State, including domestic flights to and from the delegates’ hometowns, international flights to and from Korea, and hotels, meals, and local transportation while in Washington, DC.

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Right ImageThe Republic of Korea National Assembly’s Committee on Foreign Affairs, Trade, and Unification will cover all program costs in Korea, including accommodations, meals, and local transportation to scheduled meetings and events, as well as entrance fees for planned cultural events, museums, musical performances, etc.

Other incidental expenses, such as gifts, souvenirs, movies, free time activities, and meals outside those included as part of the program are the responsibility of the individual participants.

Qualifications and Responsibilities

Minimum Requirements

Participants in the program are required to meet the following requirements: 

  • Active and demonstrated interest in the U.S. government, U.S. foreign policy, and/or U.S. - Korean bilateral relations; 
  • A minimum of two academic years at an accredited institution of higher learning; 
  • American citizen, preferably between the ages of 21 and 27, with a valid U.S. passport; 
  • Be up to date on vaccinations prior to program start. 
  • Enthusiasm for travel and experiencing different cultures and traditions; and 
  • Recommendation letter from a supervisor, colleague, or professor.

Responsibilities for U.S. Delegates

  • Demonstrate willingness to experience Korean culture and participate in cross-cultural exchange;
  • Represent the U.S. and your recommending congressional office as an “Ambassador” to Korea;
  • Act as host to your Korean counterpart during the Washington, DC portion of the program;
  • Fully familiarize yourself with provided reading materials and program itinerary;
  • Actively participate in discussions during professional appointments with questions and analysis;
  • Sign agreement to abide by COVID-19 guidance set forth by Meridian International Center and the Republic of Korea National Assembly; and
  • Demonstrate professionalism and respect for all participants and hosts throughout the program.

Post-Program Requirements

  • A one-page memo is due one week after the completion of the program summarizing each participant’s experience on this program.

Important note: this program is not geared for U.S. applicants who have already had significant opportunities to travel or live in Korea. All American applicants must participate in the full Washington, DC and Korea program, including meetings and cultural activities.

How to Apply 

APPLY TODAY

Deadline: April 12, 2024 at 11:59pm EST

Staff

Project summary

2024 U.S. Congress – Republic of Korea National Assembly Exchange Program
Number of Visitors: 21
Regions: Western Hemisphere, East Asia and Pacific
Countries: South Korea, United States
Impact Areas: Education, Public Diplomacy, Youth Leadership Development
Program Areas: Global Leadership