Thirteen Chilean Students from subsidized public high schools from around the country were selected from more than 300 candidates to represent Chile in the Youth Ambassadors program in the United States. The program is sponsored and funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and made possible through the U.S. Embassy in Santiago and World Learning.
The students, ranging in age from 15 to 17, will travel to the United States for three weeks at the end of March. Their program will include tourism and cultural activities. In addition, they will have the opportunity to learn more about North American culture by living with U.S. host families, visiting schools, and participating in social activities and volunteerism.
The objective of the Youth Ambassadors program is to help talented students develop their personal leadership skills and encourage a sense of civic responsibility that can support their communities. Another objective is to promote mutual respect and tolerance among youth from different ethnic, religious, and national groups. The program also helps to create a hemispheric network. Upon their return to Chile, the students will develop a project or social initiative to help resolve a difficulty in their local community, applying the tools learned during their visit to the United States.
The Youth Ambassadors program is highly competitive and the selection process was difficult, due to the excellent applicants. The Chilean participants were selected for their outstanding leadership, community engagement, academic achievement, and understanding of English. Both the program and content of the trip will be announced to the winners closer to the trip date.
Two adult mentors will travel to the United States with the students and were chosen through an open competition. In addition to accompanying the Youth Ambassadors, the mentors are responsible for supporting the students in the implementation of their projects upon their return to Chile.
The winners of the 2014 Youth Ambassadors program are:
- Región de Antofagasta, Antofagasta: Francisco Javier Bustos Espinoza, Colegio Inglés de San José
- Región del Bío-Bío, Concepción: Cristián Omar Chamorro Aguilera, Colegio Salesiano de Concepción
- Región de Los Ríos, Valdivia: Felipe Alfonso Coronado Davinson, Liceo Armando Robles Rivera
- Región de Aysén, Coyhaique: Martín Ignacio Guillermo Cortés Espinoza, Liceo San Felipe Benicio
- Región de Los Lagos, Castro: Jose Ignacio Eugenin Diaz
- Región de Los Ríos, Valdivia: Yoscelyn Andrea Karina Baez Fernández, Colegio María Auxiliadora
- Región Metropolitana, Santiago: Maximiliano Hernán Morales Ibáñez, Colegio El Bosque Educa UC
- Región del Bío-Bío, San Carlos: Andrés Ignacio Irribarra Ramírez, Colegio Concepción de San Carlos
- Región de Valparaíso, Quintero: Elena Constanza Bergalias Villaseca
- Región de Tarapacá, Iquique: Gabriela Monserrat Fernández Cisternas, Liceo María Auxiliadora
- Región de Valparaíso, Los Andes: Constanza Carolina Garrido Villalobos, Liceo Maximiliano Salas Marchán
- Región Metropolitana, Santiago: Karín Betzabeth González Sánchez, Colegio San Lucas
- Región Metropolitana, Puente Alto: Marcela Ignacia Jorquera Salinas, Colegio Familia de Nazareth
- Región Metropolitana, Melipilla: Betsabé Barrera Muñoz
- Región de la Araucanía, Villarrica: Carmen Gloria Ormazábal Astudillo