Youth Ambassadors Selected for 2023

Congratulations to all the students who were selected for Youth Ambassador exchanges in 2023! Students go through a rigorous application and interview process before being selected for travel to one of our sister cities. After selection, students attend cultural orientations to prepare for travel abroad and to get to know the culture of their destination.

A special congratulation to Delia Sanchez-Juarez who received the Yamagata Emerging Leader Scholarship for her excellence in community service and leadership. Delia will be using the scholarship to travel to Nagaoka, Japan in the summer.

Budapest, Hungary

  • Julie Almanza, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Virginia Caceres, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Hawaii Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Camila Howard, Arlington High School
  • Keiko Sanchez, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Aileen Santillan, World Languages Institute
  • Luke Waddell, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Julianna Wood, World Languages Institute
Delegation Leaders
  • Jane Card, Western Hills High School
  • Nicole Vallee, Tarrant County College

Nagaoka, Japan

  • Nara Acuña-Guba, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Andrew Booth, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Sam Brown, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Vivian Chastain, World Languages Institute
  • Shynice Conner, Crowley Collegiate Academy
  • Oscar Cruz, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Ariel de Alba Chu, World Languages Institute
  • Natalia Gusman, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Aiden Gutierrez, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Luca Riccetti, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Delia Sanchez-Juarez, World Languages Institute
  • Carson Stavenhagen, Southwest Christian
Delegation Leaders
  • Chelsy Beninate, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Sam Whiting, Harmony Science Academy

Nagaoka, Japan – Harashin

  • Laila Abu Tobeh, Aledo High School
  • Julie Almanza, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Dorthea Hart, Booker T. Washington
  • Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Alexandra Rodriguez, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Conner Smith, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Ian Valderas, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Alternate: Anjali Ferguson, Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences
  • Alternate: Myiesha Sharma, Flower Mound High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Dimanche Brewer, International Charm School
  • Kimberly Kowalski, Fort Worth Academy

Nimes, France

  • Abigail Cawyer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Anjali Ferguson, Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences
  • Aspen Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Sebastian Harasimiuk, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Emelia Marquino, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Chloe McLain, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Daisy Pulido, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Penelope Sauer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Gigi Schueneman Helling, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Zoe Schwarz, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Lauren Venegas, Nolan Catholic High School
Delegation Leaders
  • James Gleaton, Tarrant County College
  • Kenzie Knox, Nolan Catholic High School

Mbabane, Eswatini

  • Abigail Cawyer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Aspen Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Dorthea Hart, Booker T. Washington
  • Antti Havia, homeschool
  • Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Emerson Smith, Trinity Valley School
  • Ava Stubblefield, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Lauren Venegas, Nolan Catholic High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Tracey Cravens, Northside High School
  • Imelda Dunlap, Young Women’s Leadership Academy

Reggio Emilia, Italy

  • Valdemar Gomez, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Mariana Gonzalez, World Languages Institute
  • Saira Grant, Independence High School
  • Antti Havia, homeschool
  • Celeste Jenkins-O’Reilly, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Preston Jezek, Southlake Carroll High School
  • Karen Medina, Western Hill High School
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Myiesha Sharma, Flower Mound High School
  • Conner Smith, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Carson Stavenhagen, Southwest Christian
Delegations Leaders
  • Kimberly Tezak-Daus, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Courtney Upp, Stuard Elementary

Trier, Germany

  • Brenna Belauskas, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Logan Bettinger, Trinity Valley School
  • Aaron Clark, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Bryn Kane, Arlington Heights High School
  • Erin Miller, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Kelly Ngyuen, Amon Carter Riverside High School
  • Nancy Tran, Amon Carter Riverside High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Cindy Vasquez
  • Julia King

2022-11-22 04:15

Youth Ambassadors Selected for 2023

Congratulations to all the students who were selected for Youth Ambassador exchanges in 2023! Students go through a rigorous application and interview process before being selected for travel to one of our sister cities. After selection, students attend cultural orientations to prepare for travel abroad and to get to know the culture of their destination.

A special congratulation to Delia Sanchez-Juarez who received the Yamagata Emerging Leader Scholarship for her excellence in community service and leadership. Delia will be using the scholarship to travel to Nagaoka, Japan in the summer.

Budapest, Hungary

  • Julie Almanza, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Virginia Caceres, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Hawaii Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Camila Howard, Arlington High School
  • Keiko Sanchez, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Aileen Santillan, World Languages Institute
  • Luke Waddell, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Julianna Wood, World Languages Institute
Delegation Leaders
  • Jane Card, Western Hills High School
  • Nicole Vallee, Tarrant County College

Nagaoka, Japan

  • Nara Acuña-Guba, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Andrew Booth, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Sam Brown, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Vivian Chastain, World Languages Institute
  • Shynice Conner, Crowley Collegiate Academy
  • Oscar Cruz, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Ariel de Alba Chu, World Languages Institute
  • Natalia Gusman, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Aiden Gutierrez, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Luca Riccetti, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Delia Sanchez-Juarez, World Languages Institute
  • Carson Stavenhagen, Southwest Christian
Delegation Leaders
  • Chelsy Beninate, Fort Worth Country Day
  • Sam Whiting, Harmony Science Academy

Nagaoka, Japan – Harashin

  • Laila Abu Tobeh, Aledo High School
  • Julie Almanza, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Dorthea Hart, Booker T. Washington
  • Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Alexandra Rodriguez, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Conner Smith, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Ian Valderas, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Alternate: Anjali Ferguson, Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences
  • Alternate: Myiesha Sharma, Flower Mound High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Dimanche Brewer, International Charm School
  • Kimberly Kowalski, Fort Worth Academy

Nimes, France

  • Abigail Cawyer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Anjali Ferguson, Texas Academy of Biomedical Sciences
  • Aspen Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Sebastian Harasimiuk, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Emelia Marquino, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Chloe McLain, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Daisy Pulido, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Penelope Sauer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Gigi Schueneman Helling, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Zoe Schwarz, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Lauren Venegas, Nolan Catholic High School
Delegation Leaders
  • James Gleaton, Tarrant County College
  • Kenzie Knox, Nolan Catholic High School

Mbabane, Eswatini

  • Abigail Cawyer, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Aspen Guerin, Southwest High School
  • Dorthea Hart, Booker T. Washington
  • Antti Havia, homeschool
  • Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Emerson Smith, Trinity Valley School
  • Ava Stubblefield, I.M. Terrell Academy
  • Lauren Venegas, Nolan Catholic High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Tracey Cravens, Northside High School
  • Imelda Dunlap, Young Women’s Leadership Academy

Reggio Emilia, Italy

  • Valdemar Gomez, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Mariana Gonzalez, World Languages Institute
  • Saira Grant, Independence High School
  • Antti Havia, homeschool
  • Celeste Jenkins-O’Reilly, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Preston Jezek, Southlake Carroll High School
  • Karen Medina, Western Hill High School
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Myiesha Sharma, Flower Mound High School
  • Conner Smith, R.L. Paschal High School
  • Carson Stavenhagen, Southwest Christian
Delegations Leaders
  • Kimberly Tezak-Daus, Diamond Hill-Jarvis High School
  • Courtney Upp, Stuard Elementary

Trier, Germany

  • Brenna Belauskas, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Logan Bettinger, Trinity Valley School
  • Aaron Clark, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Bryn Kane, Arlington Heights High School
  • Erin Miller, All Saints Episcopal School
  • Kelly Ngyuen, Amon Carter Riverside High School
  • Nancy Tran, Amon Carter Riverside High School
Delegation Leaders
  • Cindy Vasquez
  • Julia King

Sister Cities Hiring Part-Time Positions

Fort Worth Sister Cities International is seeking two energetic individuals to work part-time on the International Leadership Academy and the Tricolore Youth Sports Games.

International Leadership Academy Coordinator

The International Leadership Academy Coordinator executes and administers the International Leadership Academy, a dynamic, two-week international issues forum and leadership development program for high school students, and the Jr. International Leadership Academy, a weeklong program for middle school students. Both programs will take place in the summer of 2023.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Work with leadership and staff on all aspects of ILA/JILA including planning daily activities
  • Train and supervise Fort Worth and international interns
  • Maintain roster of all participants with accurate and up to date information
  • Communicate with parents and students about deadlines and logistical details
  • Oversee acquisition of all supplies including official t-shirts
  • Assist leaders with training sessions for local students
  • Manage all collateral and marketing pieces
  • Organize arrival and departure of all international participants
  • Recruit host families and manage home hosting experiences for international delegates
  • Provide 24/7 on-call service during ILA
  • Oversee program evaluation and wrap up

Job Requirements

  • High school education or similar
  • Project management experience
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Good organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills
  • Familiarity with Office Suite, Dropbox and Google Forms

Applicants may send resume and cover letter to beth@fwsistercities.org.

Tricolore Games Coordinator

The Tricolore Games Coordinator provides logistical support for the Tricolore Youth Sports Games, held every four years in Fort Worth’s sister city, Reggio Emilia, Italy, an Olympic-style youth sports competition to foster peace and unity among people. The Tricolore Games will take place July 22-30, 2023.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Work with leadership and staff on all aspects Tricolore Games
  • Maintain roster of all participants with accurate and up to date information
  • Oversee management and acquisition of all supplies, including delegate uniforms
  • Assist leaders with pre-exchange training sessions for local students
  • Manage departure and return of all participants
  • Coordinate travel logistics
  • Oversee program evaluation and coordinate post-exchange recognition & celebration

Job Requirements

  • High school education or similar
  • Project management experience
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Good organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills
  • Familiarity with Office Suite, Dropbox and Google Forms

Applicants may send resume and cover letter to beth@fwsistercities.org.  

2022-10-19 10:32

Sister Cities Hiring Part-Time Positions

Fort Worth Sister Cities International is seeking two energetic individuals to work part-time on the International Leadership Academy and the Tricolore Youth Sports Games.

International Leadership Academy Coordinator

The International Leadership Academy Coordinator executes and administers the International Leadership Academy, a dynamic, two-week international issues forum and leadership development program for high school students, and the Jr. International Leadership Academy, a weeklong program for middle school students. Both programs will take place in the summer of 2023.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Work with leadership and staff on all aspects of ILA/JILA including planning daily activities
  • Train and supervise Fort Worth and international interns
  • Maintain roster of all participants with accurate and up to date information
  • Communicate with parents and students about deadlines and logistical details
  • Oversee acquisition of all supplies including official t-shirts
  • Assist leaders with training sessions for local students
  • Manage all collateral and marketing pieces
  • Organize arrival and departure of all international participants
  • Recruit host families and manage home hosting experiences for international delegates
  • Provide 24/7 on-call service during ILA
  • Oversee program evaluation and wrap up

Job Requirements

  • High school education or similar
  • Project management experience
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Good organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills
  • Familiarity with Office Suite, Dropbox and Google Forms

Applicants may send resume and cover letter to beth@fwsistercities.org.

Tricolore Games Coordinator

The Tricolore Games Coordinator provides logistical support for the Tricolore Youth Sports Games, held every four years in Fort Worth’s sister city, Reggio Emilia, Italy, an Olympic-style youth sports competition to foster peace and unity among people. The Tricolore Games will take place July 22-30, 2023.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Work with leadership and staff on all aspects Tricolore Games
  • Maintain roster of all participants with accurate and up to date information
  • Oversee management and acquisition of all supplies, including delegate uniforms
  • Assist leaders with pre-exchange training sessions for local students
  • Manage departure and return of all participants
  • Coordinate travel logistics
  • Oversee program evaluation and coordinate post-exchange recognition & celebration

Job Requirements

  • High school education or similar
  • Project management experience
  • Ability to meet deadlines
  • Good organizational, interpersonal, and communication skills
  • Familiarity with Office Suite, Dropbox and Google Forms

Applicants may send resume and cover letter to beth@fwsistercities.org.  

Sister Cities Presents Global Impact Awards

Mayor Mattie Parker and Dinner Chairs, Joanne and David Campbell are hosting an evening of international cuisine and entertainment as Fort Worth Sister Cities celebrates its 35-year relationship with Trier, Germany. Honorary Dinner Chairs Helmut and Hilde Horchler will also be recognized.

During dinner global recognition will be highlighted through awards given to honor businesses, individuals and organizations that make a significant contribution to global understanding, world political stability and international trade or cooperative efforts to solve international health, economic, social or environmental challenges.

This year’s recipients include:

  • Fort Worth Zoo – GLOBAL CITIZENS AWARD
  • Jacques Marquis – GLOBAL IMPACT AWARD
  • Mrs. Renfro’s – GLOBAL NEXUS AWARD
  • Eosera Inc., Elyse Dickerson & Joe Griffin – GLOBAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP AWARD

The event is made possible by the Fort Worth Sister Cities Members Circle of Giving, a network of individuals, organizations, corporations and community leaders committed to expanding global relationships for peace and prosperity at home and abroad.

Funding and in-kind support from the City of Fort Worth plays a key role in the Sister Cities’ mission, but most work is made possible from public support through the Members Circle of Giving.

The dinner will be held Nov. 3 at the Fort Worth Convention Center. For ticket information click here.

Judges from Serbia Examine Rule of Law in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX — The Congressional Office for International Leadership, an agency of the U.S. Congress, will send a delegation of judges from Serbia to Fort Worth from Sept. 9-17, 2022, through the Open World program. The delegation consists of five professionals who will be accompanied by a bicultural facilitator and an interpreter. While in Fort Worth, the COIL program participants will be hosted by Fort Worth Sister Cities International.

Prior to their arrival in Fort Worth the participants will complete an orientation in Washington, D.C.

In Fort Worth, delegates will collaborate on best practices for rule of law and criminal proceedings with local leaders in Fort Worth including Judge Mark Pittman, Judge Jeff Cureton, Judge Robb Catalano, and Chief Justice Bonnie Sudderth. Activities include visits to the U.S. District Court, Criminal District Court No. 3, the Second Court of Appeals, the District Attorney’s office, and the Texas A&M University School of Law. The delegation will stay in the homes of Fort Worth residents who serve as hospitality hosts.

More than 28,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in the Open World program. Open World offers one of the most effective U.S. exchange programs to promote mutually beneficial options for depolarized engagement between future national leaders.

Founded in 1999 by Congress, COIL maintains a vast network of more than 28,000 alumni in strategic countries including Russia, Ukraine, and others in the Balkans, Caucuses, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Open World supports legislative diplomacy efforts for Members of Congress by conducting exchanges that establish lasting professional relationships between emerging leaders and their U.S. counterparts. Program participants are provided with extensive exposure to American politics, accountable governance, and citizen diplomacy, while being home hosted by American families. To learn more about Open World, please visit www.openworld.gov/.

2022-08-19 10:47

Judges from Serbia Examine Rule of Law in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX — The Congressional Office for International Leadership, an agency of the U.S. Congress, will send a delegation of judges from Serbia to Fort Worth from Sept. 9-17, 2022, through the Open World program. The delegation consists of five professionals who will be accompanied by a bicultural facilitator and an interpreter. While in Fort Worth, the COIL program participants will be hosted by Fort Worth Sister Cities International.

Prior to their arrival in Fort Worth the participants will complete an orientation in Washington, D.C.

In Fort Worth, delegates will collaborate on best practices for rule of law and criminal proceedings with local leaders in Fort Worth including Judge Mark Pittman, Judge Jeff Cureton, Judge Robb Catalano, and Chief Justice Bonnie Sudderth. Activities include visits to the U.S. District Court, Criminal District Court No. 3, the Second Court of Appeals, the District Attorney’s office, and the Texas A&M University School of Law. The delegation will stay in the homes of Fort Worth residents who serve as hospitality hosts.

More than 28,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in the Open World program. Open World offers one of the most effective U.S. exchange programs to promote mutually beneficial options for depolarized engagement between future national leaders.

Founded in 1999 by Congress, COIL maintains a vast network of more than 28,000 alumni in strategic countries including Russia, Ukraine, and others in the Balkans, Caucuses, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Open World supports legislative diplomacy efforts for Members of Congress by conducting exchanges that establish lasting professional relationships between emerging leaders and their U.S. counterparts. Program participants are provided with extensive exposure to American politics, accountable governance, and citizen diplomacy, while being home hosted by American families. To learn more about Open World, please visit www.openworld.gov/.

Fort Worth Wins Best Youth Program in the Nation

Fort Worth, Texas has won the Sister Cities International Innovation in Youth & Education Award for a city with a population greater than 300,000 for outstanding youth programming in 2021. The awards competition, which is open to over 500 sister city programs nationwide, recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding individuals and community sister city programs that are promoting peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation.

Fort Worth Sister Cities International has some of the most robust international youth programming in the U.S. We focus a majority of our programming on youth because we know that these programs change the trajectory of a student’s life by:

  • Improving school performance
  • Teaching perseverance
  • Providing problem-solving skills
  • Giving students an edge for universities and scholarships
  • Increasing their desire to serve the community
  • Creating empathy for others

In 2021, Fort Worth Sister Cities International explored ways to increase the innovation and diversity of our programs. With the pandemic preventing many in-person programs and exchanges, the team of staff and volunteers rolled up their sleeves, conducted numerous zoom meetings, and designed virtual programming for students and educators to increase global competency in our community.

Because most of the programming was conducted virtually, it was accessible to many more students since there was little cost associated with the online programming. The students we recruited demonstrated Fort Worth’s diversity to the world: 37% Latino/Hispanic; 17% White; 24% Black; 19% Asian/Pacific Islander; and 3% multi-racial.

Programs conducted in 2021 included:

  1. Virtual Youth Ambassador exchange with Nagaoka, Japan
  2. The Experiment Digital virtual exchange program through the US Department of State
  3. Showcase of Young Artists and Authors
  4. Local student group Fort Worth Youth International
  5. Virtual programming with Boys & Girls Club of Tarrant County and Toluca, Mexico
  6. Virtual International Leadership Academy with six sister cities
  7. World Learning virtual homestay with Central America and the Dominican Republic

Sister Cities International Annual Awards recognize excellence in overall programming and highlight key innovations in arts and culture; business and trade; humanitarian assistance; and youth and education. All award winners were honored during Sister Cities International’s 2022 Annual Business Meeting held virtually July 8.

Click here to find out more about youth programs.

2022-07-12 11:09

Fort Worth Wins Best Youth Program in the Nation

Fort Worth, Texas has won the Sister Cities International Innovation in Youth & Education Award for a city with a population greater than 300,000 for outstanding youth programming in 2021. The awards competition, which is open to over 500 sister city programs nationwide, recognizes the accomplishments of outstanding individuals and community sister city programs that are promoting peace through mutual respect, understanding, and cooperation.

Fort Worth Sister Cities International has some of the most robust international youth programming in the U.S. We focus a majority of our programming on youth because we know that these programs change the trajectory of a student’s life by:

  • Improving school performance
  • Teaching perseverance
  • Providing problem-solving skills
  • Giving students an edge for universities and scholarships
  • Increasing their desire to serve the community
  • Creating empathy for others

In 2021, Fort Worth Sister Cities International explored ways to increase the innovation and diversity of our programs. With the pandemic preventing many in-person programs and exchanges, the team of staff and volunteers rolled up their sleeves, conducted numerous zoom meetings, and designed virtual programming for students and educators to increase global competency in our community.

Because most of the programming was conducted virtually, it was accessible to many more students since there was little cost associated with the online programming. The students we recruited demonstrated Fort Worth’s diversity to the world: 37% Latino/Hispanic; 17% White; 24% Black; 19% Asian/Pacific Islander; and 3% multi-racial.

Programs conducted in 2021 included:

  1. Virtual Youth Ambassador exchange with Nagaoka, Japan
  2. The Experiment Digital virtual exchange program through the US Department of State
  3. Showcase of Young Artists and Authors
  4. Local student group Fort Worth Youth International
  5. Virtual programming with Boys & Girls Club of Tarrant County and Toluca, Mexico
  6. Virtual International Leadership Academy with six sister cities
  7. World Learning virtual homestay with Central America and the Dominican Republic

Sister Cities International Annual Awards recognize excellence in overall programming and highlight key innovations in arts and culture; business and trade; humanitarian assistance; and youth and education. All award winners were honored during Sister Cities International’s 2022 Annual Business Meeting held virtually July 8.

Click here to find out more about youth programs.

Summer Leadership Academies Return to Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX – High school students from around the world will descend on Fort Worth starting July 8. Students from Eswatini and Italy, along with Fort Worth students, will be in Fort Worth for the 33rd International Leadership Academy. The academy’s goal is to increase communication and leadership skills through teambuilding and problem-solving using diplomacy.

Since 1989, the ILA has brought young people from Fort Worth’s nine sister cities to the area to discuss pressing global issues. This year, nearly 50 participants will converge at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Fort Worth July 16 – 31 to share their cultures and learn about citizen diplomacy and its importance.

Participants will live at the hotel and share a room with students from another country. They will attend classes that are designed to challenge stereotypes, highlight cultures, promote diplomatic dialogue, develop leadership skills, and solve global problems. Activities will also include visits to area businesses, museums, and other cultural venues specific to Fort Worth, as well as a community service project.

This year marks the 16th year of ILA’s middle school program, the Jr. International Leadership Academy held July 10 – 15. College students will serve as facilitators for Fort Worth students who will discuss the same issues as their high school counterparts, gaining international perspectives.

“The students will be challenged to improve and refine their leadership skills and learn how diverse cultures can support common goals. It’s a tremendous opportunity for personal growth,” said Nancy Marchant, ILA and JILA Coordinator.

The closing ceremony for ILA will take place July 30, 10 a.m. at the Texas A&M University School of Law and is free and open to the public.

2022-06-22 10:44

Summer Leadership Academies Return to Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX – High school students from around the world will descend on Fort Worth starting July 8. Students from Eswatini and Italy, along with Fort Worth students, will be in Fort Worth for the 33rd International Leadership Academy. The academy’s goal is to increase communication and leadership skills through teambuilding and problem-solving using diplomacy.

Since 1989, the ILA has brought young people from Fort Worth’s nine sister cities to the area to discuss pressing global issues. This year, nearly 50 participants will converge at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Fort Worth July 16 – 31 to share their cultures and learn about citizen diplomacy and its importance.

Participants will live at the hotel and share a room with students from another country. They will attend classes that are designed to challenge stereotypes, highlight cultures, promote diplomatic dialogue, develop leadership skills, and solve global problems. Activities will also include visits to area businesses, museums, and other cultural venues specific to Fort Worth, as well as a community service project.

This year marks the 16th year of ILA’s middle school program, the Jr. International Leadership Academy held July 10 – 15. College students will serve as facilitators for Fort Worth students who will discuss the same issues as their high school counterparts, gaining international perspectives.

“The students will be challenged to improve and refine their leadership skills and learn how diverse cultures can support common goals. It’s a tremendous opportunity for personal growth,” said Nancy Marchant, ILA and JILA Coordinator.

The closing ceremony for ILA will take place July 30, 10 a.m. at the Texas A&M University School of Law and is free and open to the public.

Leaders from the Republic of Georgia Examine Urban Planning in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX — The Congressional Office for International Leadership, an agency of the U.S. Congress, will send a delegation of urban planners from the Republic of Georgia to Fort Worth from July 22-30, 2022, through the Open World program. The delegation consists of five professionals who will be accompanied by a bicultural facilitator and an interpreter. While in Fort Worth, the COIL program participants will be hosted by Fort Worth Sister Cities International and the City of Fort Worth through a team led by Assistant City Manager Fernando Costa.

Prior to their arrival in Fort Worth the participants will complete an orientation in Washington, D.C.

In Fort Worth, delegates will collaborate on best practices for urban planning and preservation with city staff and local leaders in Fort Worth. Additional activities include visits to the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Near Southside, Inc, and Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. The delegation will stay in the homes of Fort Worth residents who serve as hospitality hosts.

More than 28,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in the Open World program. Open World offers one of the most effective U.S. exchange programs to promote mutually beneficial options for depolarized engagement between future national leaders.

Founded in 1999 by Congress, the Open World program, administered by the Congressional Office for International Leadership, maintains a vast network of more than 28,000 alumni in strategic countries including Russia, Ukraine, and others in the Balkans, Caucuses, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Open World supports legislative diplomacy efforts for Members of Congress by conducting exchanges that establish lasting professional relationships between emerging leaders and their U.S. counterparts. Program participants are provided with extensive exposure to American politics, accountable governance, and citizen diplomacy, while being home hosted by American families. To learn more about Open World, please visit www.openworld.gov/.

2022-06-22 10:34

Leaders from the Republic of Georgia Examine Urban Planning in Fort Worth

Fort Worth, TX — The Congressional Office for International Leadership, an agency of the U.S. Congress, will send a delegation of urban planners from the Republic of Georgia to Fort Worth from July 22-30, 2022, through the Open World program. The delegation consists of five professionals who will be accompanied by a bicultural facilitator and an interpreter. While in Fort Worth, the COIL program participants will be hosted by Fort Worth Sister Cities International and the City of Fort Worth through a team led by Assistant City Manager Fernando Costa.

Prior to their arrival in Fort Worth the participants will complete an orientation in Washington, D.C.

In Fort Worth, delegates will collaborate on best practices for urban planning and preservation with city staff and local leaders in Fort Worth. Additional activities include visits to the Fort Worth Botanic Garden, Near Southside, Inc, and Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. The delegation will stay in the homes of Fort Worth residents who serve as hospitality hosts.

More than 28,000 current and future leaders from post-Soviet era countries have participated in the Open World program. Open World offers one of the most effective U.S. exchange programs to promote mutually beneficial options for depolarized engagement between future national leaders.

Founded in 1999 by Congress, the Open World program, administered by the Congressional Office for International Leadership, maintains a vast network of more than 28,000 alumni in strategic countries including Russia, Ukraine, and others in the Balkans, Caucuses, Central Asia and Eastern Europe. Open World supports legislative diplomacy efforts for Members of Congress by conducting exchanges that establish lasting professional relationships between emerging leaders and their U.S. counterparts. Program participants are provided with extensive exposure to American politics, accountable governance, and citizen diplomacy, while being home hosted by American families. To learn more about Open World, please visit www.openworld.gov/.

Elementary Students Receiving Dual Language Enrichment

Fort Worth, Texas – Sister Cities Partners with FWISD

In June, Fort Worth will welcome nine university students and two educators from Toluca, Mexico’s Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education and the Autonomous University of the State of Mexico for a Dual Language Camp for Fort Worth elementary students in partnership with the Fort Worth ISD. The Toluca university students will act as international facilitators for the three-week camp virtually June 3-16 and in person June 20-30 at Burton Hill Elementary School.

This year’s theme is Constructing Biliteracy through the Panther City Project and will provide summer enrichment for FWISD students in Dual Language programs to increase language and literacy across the content areas. Up to 100 students are expected to attend.

“The history, growth and future of the city of Fort Worth is so deeply connected with the Trinity River. We see wonderful examples of how water and natural ecosystems shape our daily life and are eager for our Dual Language learners to learn through this richness. It will provide students opportunities to engage in hands-on, authentic activities that incorporate math, science, social studies, and literacy in two languages. We are thrilled to welcome our Sister Cities partners from Toluca, Mexico,” said Marisa Silva, Coordinator of Dual Language Programs for the Fort Worth ISD.

The Toluca facilitators and educators are being home hosted by local families in order to give these visitors a glimpse into American life and to give the hosting families exposure to the culture of Toluca, as well.

While here the group will also explore local cultural attractions and experience true Texas hospitality. Visits include the Stockyards, the Kimbell Art Museum, Sundance Square Plaza and more.

2022-05-25 12:18

Elementary Students Receiving Dual Language Enrichment

Fort Worth, Texas – Sister Cities Partners with FWISD

In June, Fort Worth will welcome nine university students and two educators from Toluca, Mexico’s Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education and the Autonomous University of the State of Mexico for a Dual Language Camp for Fort Worth elementary students in partnership with the Fort Worth ISD. The Toluca university students will act as international facilitators for the three-week camp virtually June 3-16 and in person June 20-30 at Burton Hill Elementary School.

This year’s theme is Constructing Biliteracy through the Panther City Project and will provide summer enrichment for FWISD students in Dual Language programs to increase language and literacy across the content areas. Up to 100 students are expected to attend.

“The history, growth and future of the city of Fort Worth is so deeply connected with the Trinity River. We see wonderful examples of how water and natural ecosystems shape our daily life and are eager for our Dual Language learners to learn through this richness. It will provide students opportunities to engage in hands-on, authentic activities that incorporate math, science, social studies, and literacy in two languages. We are thrilled to welcome our Sister Cities partners from Toluca, Mexico,” said Marisa Silva, Coordinator of Dual Language Programs for the Fort Worth ISD.

The Toluca facilitators and educators are being home hosted by local families in order to give these visitors a glimpse into American life and to give the hosting families exposure to the culture of Toluca, as well.

While here the group will also explore local cultural attractions and experience true Texas hospitality. Visits include the Stockyards, the Kimbell Art Museum, Sundance Square Plaza and more.

Students to Represent Fort Worth Abroad

Fort Worth, TX – Student Ambassadors to Visit Germany, Italy and Mexico

Fort Worth students and leaders depart next month for Trier, Germany; Reggio Emilia, Italy; and Toluca, Mexico. Delegations are led by educators from the FWISD, private schools, and universities.

In March, the students attended a Fort Worth City Council where Mayor Mattie Parker administered the Citizen Diplomat Oath to the students and their Delegation Leaders in preparation for their upcoming youth exchanges.

Students complete a vigorous selection process including personal interviews and are selected to represent the City of Fort Worth as Youth Ambassadors each year by Sister Cities. Applications are available for all students, as well as funding to support many.

Through these experiences, students benefit from a global education, as well as learn valuable leadership skills. Their understanding and respect of other cultures also increases which enhances their college and career opportunities.

When the students return to their local campuses, they share the lessons learned while abroad with others, helping make Fort Worth more globally fluent.

A list of students and leaders traveling this summer are below.

Trier, Germany – June 1-11

  • Allison Bedwell, Carroll High School
  • Eric Bormann, Trinity Valley School
  • Ashlyn Corbin, Trinity Valley School
  • Tatum Duncan, Trinity Valley School
  • Katah Gunter, Carroll High School
  • Antti Havia, home school
  • Sanvi Kishinchandani, Carroll High School
  • Chelsea Martinez, World Languages Institute
  • Caroline Nartz, Timber Creek High School
  • Henry Tincup, The Oakridge School
  • Gwendolyn Young, Southwest Christian School
Delegation Leaders
  • Chelsy Beninate, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Michael Roemer, Trinity Valley School
Associate Delegation Leader
  • Cora Valderas, Texas A&M University

Toluca, Mexico – June 4-11

  • Ari Ahdieh, Trinity Valley School
  • Beau Butler, V.R. Eaton High School
  • Azael Hernandez, I.M Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Isaiah David Kayembe, Collegiate Academy of Birdville
Delegation Leaders
  • Alexis Gross, World Languages Institute
  • Gregory Gross, Benbrook Middle High School

Reggio Emilia, Italy – June 22-30

  • Yessica Gonzalez, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Grace Hackworth, Trinity Valley School
  • Lily Keisler, Trinity Valley School
  • Jacob Lane, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Nayeli Loredo, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Joshua Mora, World Languages Institute
  • Kyle Smith, World Languages Institute
  • Karina Torres, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Patsy Torres, World Languages Institute
Delegation Leaders
  • Dawnelle Butler, Westlake Academy
  • Cindy Vasquez, City of Fort Worth
Associate Delegation Leader
  • Daisy Aguilar, Texas Tech University

2022-05-24 11:38

Students to Represent Fort Worth Abroad

Fort Worth, TX – Student Ambassadors to Visit Germany, Italy and Mexico

Fort Worth students and leaders depart next month for Trier, Germany; Reggio Emilia, Italy; and Toluca, Mexico. Delegations are led by educators from the FWISD, private schools, and universities.

In March, the students attended a Fort Worth City Council where Mayor Mattie Parker administered the Citizen Diplomat Oath to the students and their Delegation Leaders in preparation for their upcoming youth exchanges.

Students complete a vigorous selection process including personal interviews and are selected to represent the City of Fort Worth as Youth Ambassadors each year by Sister Cities. Applications are available for all students, as well as funding to support many.

Through these experiences, students benefit from a global education, as well as learn valuable leadership skills. Their understanding and respect of other cultures also increases which enhances their college and career opportunities.

When the students return to their local campuses, they share the lessons learned while abroad with others, helping make Fort Worth more globally fluent.

A list of students and leaders traveling this summer are below.

Trier, Germany – June 1-11

  • Allison Bedwell, Carroll High School
  • Eric Bormann, Trinity Valley School
  • Ashlyn Corbin, Trinity Valley School
  • Tatum Duncan, Trinity Valley School
  • Katah Gunter, Carroll High School
  • Antti Havia, home school
  • Sanvi Kishinchandani, Carroll High School
  • Chelsea Martinez, World Languages Institute
  • Caroline Nartz, Timber Creek High School
  • Henry Tincup, The Oakridge School
  • Gwendolyn Young, Southwest Christian School
Delegation Leaders
  • Chelsy Beninate, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Michael Roemer, Trinity Valley School
Associate Delegation Leader
  • Cora Valderas, Texas A&M University

Toluca, Mexico – June 4-11

  • Ari Ahdieh, Trinity Valley School
  • Beau Butler, V.R. Eaton High School
  • Azael Hernandez, I.M Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Isaiah David Kayembe, Collegiate Academy of Birdville
Delegation Leaders
  • Alexis Gross, World Languages Institute
  • Gregory Gross, Benbrook Middle High School

Reggio Emilia, Italy – June 22-30

  • Yessica Gonzalez, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Grace Hackworth, Trinity Valley School
  • Lily Keisler, Trinity Valley School
  • Jacob Lane, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Nayeli Loredo, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Joshua Mora, World Languages Institute
  • Kyle Smith, World Languages Institute
  • Karina Torres, Marine Creek Collegiate High School
  • Patsy Torres, World Languages Institute
Delegation Leaders
  • Dawnelle Butler, Westlake Academy
  • Cindy Vasquez, City of Fort Worth
Associate Delegation Leader
  • Daisy Aguilar, Texas Tech University

Sister Cities Youth Board Elected for 2022-23 School Year

On May 15, the Fort Worth Youth International youth board met to elect new officers for the 2022-2023 school year. Stay tuned to hear about their new and innovative plans to engage the Fort Worth youth community.

We also thanked and celebrated the outgoing board for their accomplishments during the 2021-2022 school year. Led by President Reshma Niraula, the board hosted an international coffeehouse kickoff event, volunteered at the Mayor’s International International Dinner and Kodomo No Hi, educated their peers about New Year’s around the world, and sponsored an international book club.

Thank you to our outgoing board and congratulations to the new board!

2022-23 Officers

  • President – Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Vice President – Valdemar Gomez, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Secretary – Bryne Kane, Arlington Heights High School
  • Public Relations – Katie Beckman, Birdville High School
  • Community Outreach – Sophia Hernandez, Trinity Valley School
  • Fundraising – Azael Hernandez, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Cultural Orientation – Lauren Oliver, Southlake Carroll High School

At Large Members

  • Seth Mayhue, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Conner Smith, Paschal High School
  • Julie Almanza, Paschal High School
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Laila Abu Tobeh, Aledo High School
  • Alexandra Rodriguez, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Ian Valderas, IM Terrell, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA

2022-05-16 12:38

Sister Cities Youth Board Elected for 2022-23 School Year

On May 15, the Fort Worth Youth International youth board met to elect new officers for the 2022-2023 school year. Stay tuned to hear about their new and innovative plans to engage the Fort Worth youth community.

We also thanked and celebrated the outgoing board for their accomplishments during the 2021-2022 school year. Led by President Reshma Niraula, the board hosted an international coffeehouse kickoff event, volunteered at the Mayor’s International International Dinner and Kodomo No Hi, educated their peers about New Year’s around the world, and sponsored an international book club.

Thank you to our outgoing board and congratulations to the new board!

2022-23 Officers

  • President – Leah Peterson, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Vice President – Valdemar Gomez, Nolan Catholic High School
  • Secretary – Bryne Kane, Arlington Heights High School
  • Public Relations – Katie Beckman, Birdville High School
  • Community Outreach – Sophia Hernandez, Trinity Valley School
  • Fundraising – Azael Hernandez, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA
  • Cultural Orientation – Lauren Oliver, Southlake Carroll High School

At Large Members

  • Seth Mayhue, Fort Worth Country Day School
  • Conner Smith, Paschal High School
  • Julie Almanza, Paschal High School
  • Jonathan Pulido, World Languages Institute
  • Laila Abu Tobeh, Aledo High School
  • Alexandra Rodriguez, Fort Worth Academy of Fine Arts
  • Ian Valderas, IM Terrell, I.M. Terrell Academy for STEM and VPA