Assistant US Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Marie Royce will travel to Ghana and Liberia from June 24 to 29, the US Government has confirmed.

Her visit will focus on strengthening higher education institutions, encouraging women’s entrepreneurship, and furthering international exchanges between the U.S. and Ghana.

She will meet with government officials, private sector representatives, local entrepreneurs, exchange program alumni, and university administrators to promote and strengthen the State Department’s cultural and educational diplomacy efforts, and highlight support for entrepreneurship in Africa,  according to a statement by the US government.

Royce will formally launch the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs (AWE) program.  She will also deliver a keynote address to exchange program alumni from 14 African countries at an Alumni Thematic International Exchange Seminar on women’s entrepreneurship.

Marie Royce was unanimously confirmed by the United States Senate and sworn in as Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs on March 30, 2018. In this capacity, she oversees a wide range of programs that advance U.S. foreign policy objectives through educational, professional, cultural, and sports exchanges that promote mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other nations and create networks and partnerships to advance U.S. foreign policy goals and address global challenges and opportunities

About the Alumni Thematic International Exchange Seminar(Alumni TIES)

The U.S. Department of State sponsors Alumni Thematic International Exchange Seminars (Alumni TIES) exclusively for alumni of U.S. government-sponsored exchange programs. Alumni TIES is an opportunity for exchange alumni to learn about key regional issues, receive training, collaborate with fellow alumni, and apply for small grants to implement projects in their home communities. Through Alumni TIES, participants:

  • Identify and form networks with partners for ongoing regional networking and action.

  • Increase their knowledge of U.S. policies and practices related to the thematic focus of the seminar and apply this knowledge within their own community.

  • Develop and implement action plans and apply for small grants to complete their projects.

Alumni TIES take place four times a year in various regions of the world. These 3-4 day seminars address a theme of regional importance and include expert speakers, panels, trainings on project management, site visits, and alumni networking activities. Alumni TIES is implemented in partnership with World Learning.

Participants vary in age and level of expertise, but all are USG exchange alumni who are engaged on the seminar topic. All participants are also highly motivated to create positive change on this topic in their communities.

Participant Selection Process

  • International exchange alumni are nominated by their regional U.S. Embassies based on the theme of the seminar. Final selection is conducted by the State Department’s Office of Alumni Affairs of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

  • U.S. citizen exchange alumni interested in domestic TIES events must apply through a competitive, online application process. Final review is conducted by the State Department’s Office of Alumni Affairs of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.