2014 Middle East Partnership Initiative (MEPI) Student Leaders Program - NOW OPEN

The deadline for applications is midnight on Saturday, January 25, 2014

The U.S. Embassy in Baghdad is pleased to announce that applications are currently being accepted for the 2014 MEPI Student Leaders Program.  The program is funded by the U.S. Department of State and supports the goals of the U.S. – Iraq Strategic Framework Agreement.  It is a six-week academic summer program in the United States and will take place from June 25 – August 7, 2014

The MEPI Student Leaders Program aims to cultivate participatory and pluralistic societies by developing the leadership capacity of young democratic reformers  Approximately 120 students from the Middle East and North Africa region are expected to participate in 2014.  

Each Student Leader will be assigned to one of six selected U.S. host institutions, generally a U.S. college or university.  Each host institution will design course materials addressing common themes including a comparative analysis of leadership styles, conflict resolution and group dynamics, the role of the civil society in the democratic process, and social and political change management.  All programs will also share two key components: a five-week academic residency at the host institution and a one-week educational study tour designed to complement and reinforce the concepts explored in the academic residency.  All students must be prepared to engage seriously in classroom discussions and other activities.  In addition, they will be expected to take advantage of opportunities to inform and educate Americans about the culture and society of Iraq in non-structured gatherings and public presentations.

All participants will arrive and depart through Washington, D.C., in order to participate in official U.S. Department of State welcome and farewell ceremonies and informational briefings.

Travel to visit family or friends elsewhere in the United States will not be permitted before, during or after the program, including on weekends during the academic residency period.  Students must return to Iraq immediately upon conclusion of the program.  All participants are expected to travel unaccompanied.

Eligibility Requirements: 

  • Applicants must be of 18-24 years old, citizens and residents of Iraq, committed to returning home following completion of the program.
  • Applicants must demonstrate the strong English language skills needed to participate in a U.S. academic program.
  • Applicants should have a sustained high level of academic achievement.
  • Applicants should exhibit a serious interest in pursuing leadership opportunities upon returning home and demonstrate a desire to deepen their civic engagement.
  • Applicants should indicate a serious interest in learning about the United States and are willing and able to participate fully in intensive academic, community service, and educational travel activities.
  • Selection preference will be given to applicants who have no prior travel experience in the United States and limited to no study or travel experience outside Iraq.

How to apply:

Interested applicants must fill out the application here: MEPI Student Leaders Application Form (pdf).  Send the completed application form with a copy of the photo page of your passport to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The deadline for applications is midnight on Saturday, January 25, 2014.