Au Pair in America is delighted to announce that regional program manager Elizabeth Azeizat received a McCarry Leadership Award at the Alliance for International Exchange 2016 Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. Elizabeth is a fantastic advocate for intercultural exchange and education, as you can see in the following thoughts she put together regarding the award:
I have been working in international exchange for five years, beginning at Academic Year in America (AYA). I spent three years at AYA, first as a Regional Director and then as Student Support Administrator. As a Regional Director, I placed international high school exchange students with volunteer host families and high schools. I supported host families, students, Local Coordinators and high school staff throughout the yearlong experience. I worked with coordinators to manage cases that ranged from homesickness and culture shock, to more serious cases concerning the safety of a student. As Student Support Administrator, I managed high-level support cases as well as the student disciplinary and matching process throughout the program year with Regional Directors.
Currently, I work as a Regional Program Manager at Au Pair in America. In this role, I provide year-round program support including mediation, managing communications, Community Counselor and cluster oversight as well as compliance and training. I manage high level support cases and hope that as I continue to gain experience, I will also find ways to improve the quality of our program.
The McCarry Leadership Award supports the professional development of emerging leaders in the U.S. exchange community by supporting their participation in the Annual Membership Meeting of the Alliance for International Exchange. The award honors former Alliance Executive Director, Michael McCarry, for his 21 years of service to the Alliance and recognizes the power of exchange programs to improve lives.
Receiving the McCarry Leadership award is a true honor. As a first-generation Jordanian-American who has spent my personal and professional life learning about people, cultures, and ways to bridge the many gaps that exist in our world today, I owe so much of my growth as a person to international exchange. In the political and global environment we currently find ourselves in, the more conversations that can be had about the benefits of international exchange programs, the better.
Our world needs to progress in a positive direction where differences are embraced as opportunities to learn and prosper in a cooperative and inclusive world. As members of the international education industry, we have a responsibility to help spread this message. This is not simply a professional obligation; it is a personal responsibility we share as members of a global society. I consider myself lucky to have these opportunities through the work that I do, and furthered by the Alliance and the McCarry Leadership award, I am honored and energized to continue.