Creating international connections
Cultivating local innovation
Activating global potential
February 2022
Expand Your World Today
In This Issue...
  • Quote of the Month
  • Black History Month
  • Los Angeles Area Youth Ambassadors at the World Expo Dubai
  • Sharing a Global Perspective
  • Community Events
  • Stay Informed on COVID-19
  • Upcoming International Programs
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Quote of the Month:

“My perceptions of the U.S. changed after my visit. I learned that the USA accommodates free speech and gives a platform to the community in its diversity to express their inner thoughts regardless of sex, race, nationality, or religion.”

– Yusuf Idris Jjemba from Uganda participating in a project on Countering Violent Extremism
Black History Month
February is Black History Month. This month we honor the culture and lives of Black Americans. Global exchange is a critical part of the ongoing fight for racial equality. Increasing our awareness and understanding of Black history in the US and around the globe is fundamental. IVCLA encourages you to reflect on the contributions and legacy of Black Americans. Look under Community Events for cultural events taking place during Black History Month and check out Origins of Black History Month – ASALH – The Founders of Black History Month to learn more.
Black History is L.A. History

L.A. Controller Ron Galperin released an online map of local sites and resources highlighting the importance of the City’s African American community. “Black History is L.A. History” showcases 15 local places, monuments and institutions that are culturally and historically significant to the development of the City’s African American community.

"From the days of Biddy Mason to Mayor Tom Bradley and the muralists who beautify our neighborhoods, the African American community has done so much to shape Los Angeles," said Controller Galperin. "This map gives a virtual tour of some of the City’s most valued historic sites, along with others that deserve greater public visibility, illustrating how Black Angelenos have helped transform L.A. into a diverse, modern metropolis."
The map allows users to explore places of worship, museums, notable residences and other significant landmarks throughout the city that underscore some of the contributions of the African American community. Also included is an infographic with stats about African Americans who work for the City of Los Angeles.
Los Angeles Area Youth Ambassadors at the World Expo Dubai
The Los Angeles area Youth Ambassadors have been busy at the 2020 World Expo in Dubai this year. Jesús Fernández and Alban Martinez arrived at the Expo in September of 2021 and have learned so much about the world and the UAE during their time there. Crystal Rabizadeh arrived in January 2022 and has shared her experiences thus far, and what she looks forward to still. IVCLA is thrilled to have such accomplished and driven Youth Ambassadors representing the Los Angeles area. They have been kind enough to share their experiences at the USA Pavilion with all of us here. Continue reading to hear from Jesús and Crystal about some of their favorite things at the World Expo. Check back next month to hear from Alban.
Pictured: The official tour of the USA Pavillion for John Fredy Quintero (pictured in blue), Mayor of Carmen de Viboral, Colombia, led by Youth Ambassador Jesús Fernández (far left)
By Jesús Fernández

Since I arrived at the Expo back in September, I have become increasingly certain of one thing: I know very little about the world. As a student of global affairs and public diplomacy, I often spend my free time researching and becoming aware of new cultures and different perspectives. However, participating in the Youth Ambassador program has taught me that even if I spend a lifetime learning about all the peoples of the world, I will only retain a small fraction of the knowledge that is out there. This simple truth reinforces that international cooperation is more important now than ever as we look to battle issues affecting the globe such as the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change. Expo 2020 Dubai acknowledges the importance of connecting minds from around the world in order to build a better future.

The USA Pavilion at Expo 2020 shows us that our liberties and freedom are crucial to creating a more innovative society. Inside the pavilion, we highlight a diverse set of Americans to emphasize that in the United States, anyone can be an innovator. As a Youth Ambassador, I have the privilege of greeting the 7,000 guests who visit our pavilion every day, as well as sharing with them the contents of our pavilion. One of my favorite parts is talking to our guests about our final exhibit that displays the evolution of space technology and the future of space travel. Many of our guests are fascinated by the lunar sample and the life-sized model of the Space X Falcon 9 rocket.

One of the exciting parts of our job is giving tours to distinguished guests worldwide and accompanying our Commissioner-General on official visits to other pavilions. As a Mexican-American, it was a privilege to provide the tour for the Mexican Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates. However, I believe the most critical role I have at USA Pavilion and within the Expo 2020 community is humanizing the greater Los Angeles community. Many people from around the world are familiar with Los Angeles but only recognize it through films, TV shows, and celebrities and forget there is so much more to our community than the influencers on Instagram and mansions in Calabasas. The Angeleno community is strong, diverse, resilient and is deserving of the recognition it receives because our community of 10 million people works hard every day to promote an accepting, socially conscious, and forward-thinking society.
Pictured: Youth Ambassador Jesús Fernández (left) running into Reem Ebrahim Al-Hashimi (center), the Emirati Minister of State for International Cooperation and the Managing Director for Expo 2020, at the Alicia Keys Concert at Expo.
By Crystal Rabizadeh

My favorite part of the World Expo in Dubai has been interacting with guests and connecting with people from all over the world. We meet so many interesting individuals every day with such diverse backgrounds and stories and they are always so excited to connect with an American and learn about the USA. We also regularly give tours to foreign heads of state or royalty and it’s amazing to have the opportunity to chat with them as part of the job.

I hope to continue learning from more guests and contribute further to the goal of citizen diplomacy and Expo 2020’s message of connecting minds, creating the future. I am also looking forward to exploring more of the UAE, each emirate has a distinct and interesting cultural history and natural landscape, so I am working on seeing all seven during my time here.
One of IVCLA's International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) partners, the Meridian International Center in Washington, D.C., has created a virtual gallery showcasing the history of UAE and U.S. relations over the last 50 years in honor of the 2020 World Expo in Dubai.

In celebration of the dynamic partnership between the United States and the United Arab Emirates, this exhibition showcases 50 photographs that recall notable moments, events, and people. While Americans and Emiratis had collaborated in education, medicine, and business in earlier years, the official relationship began with U.S. recognition of the UAE’s founding in 1971 and has built steadily in depth and breadth through diverse, forward-looking partnerships. The exhibition traces relationships and initiatives that have shaped five key areas of mutual interest: diplomacy and security, trade and business, health and sports, education and environment, and arts and culture. A spirit of collaboration, innovation, and giving runs through these endeavors. Visitors are invited to discover these accomplishments and human stories through the voices and images of this shared history.
— Dr. Michele Bambling
Community Events
World Trade Week Southern California is hosting the annual Kickoff Conference on May 5, 2022 from 8 A.M. to 12 P.M. at the JW Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE.

For over 95 years, World Trade Week Southern California has been the most extensive program of its kind in the nation, actively promoting global trade, which has supported our region in crisis and will be one of the most important drivers of economic recovery in the coming years. The annual Kickoff Conference convenes prominent business leaders, diplomats, government and civic officials as we discuss the crucial role of international trade in sustaining our global economy and launch more than 30 events held throughout the month of May by organizations throughout Southern California.
2022 World Trade Week Scholarships are now open!

Each year, the World Trade Week committee offers scholarships to aspiring students in international trade fields. Scholarships are awarded to outstanding graduating high school seniors entering an accredited college or university with the goal of a career in international trade, as well as college students pursuing international degrees. By fostering international trade education and international business development, the committee hopes to develop a network of international trade professionals willing to provide mentoring to future students interested in international business.

Learn more about World Trade Week's education initiatives here.

2022 Scholarship applications are open!
Application Deadline - 5 p.m., Friday, March 4, 2022
In Conversation: ​​Troy Montes-Michie and Tina Campt
February 16, 2022
7:00 - 8:30 PM

In conjunction with the new CAAM exhibition, Troy Montes-Michie: Rock of Eye, showing from Feb. 16 - Sept. 4, 2022, artist Troy Montes-Michie and Black feminist theorist Tina Campt, Professor of Humanities and Modern Culture and Media at Brown University, discuss various literal and conceptual borders that are questioned in Montes-Michie's work, including boundaries surrounding gender, sexuality, class, and ethnicity.
Troy Montes-Michie: Rock of Eye
The Exhibition, Troy Montes-Michie: Rock of Eye, is the artist's first solo museum exhibition. To tailor a garment by “rock of eye” is to rely on the drape in the fitting process—that is, to rely on experience over mathematical measurement. Draping is a kind of drawing in space: a freehand, an intuition, a trust of materials. Troy Montes-Michie: Rock of Eye, brings together collages, drawings, sculptures, and installations that draw the contours of body and place. It begins with, and departs from, his past assemblages and collages that center magazine images of the Black male body and trace the social history and form of the zoot suit, a garment at the center of the 1943 attacks primarily on Mexican American, African American, and Filipino American youth in Los Angeles known as the Zoot Suit Riots. Montes-Michie was born in El Paso, Texas, and his practice reflects his experience growing up along the United States and Mexico border.

The exhibition is presented in tandem with the artist's monograph, Rock of Eye (co-published by CAAM, Rivers Institute, and Siglio Press), which deconstructs Montes-Michie’s collage practice. In the book and in CAAM’s galleries, repurposed images lead from figure to ground—occupying an ambiguous space between portraiture and landscape—and reveal common threads between borderland subjectivity and geography.
Prosperity Market @ CAAM
Saturday, February 26, 2022
11:00 - 3:30 p.m.

As Black History Month comes to a close, celebrate Black farmers, chefs, and entrepreneurs at the Prosperity Market pop-up at CAAM! Expect your favorite farmers market goodies like fresh fruits and vegetables, discover delicious, prepared foods and handcrafted artisan goods, and enjoy a jammin’ DJ, cooking demonstrations, a kid's corner, raffles, and more!

Please arrive early; there is an LAFC game in Expo Park at 12:30 p.m. Tell the parking attendant you are coming to CAAM to ensure $15 parking. CAAM is also a short walk from the Metro Expo line USC/ Expo Park station.
Stay Informed on COVID-19
The COVID-19 vaccines are allowing many countries to begin their path to more normal lifestyles. However, that is not the case for all countries - as the infographic global report in the link below illustrates. IVCLA’s staff and board send good thoughts to all our colleagues and international alumni around the globe. We can all do our part to lend support to others, not only in Los Angeles, but all over the world. This unprecedented global crisis will be solved by coming together to share all of our knowledge, expertise, and goodwill. We are stronger together!       
An informative, infographic global report of the COVID-19 data is HERE

Free COVID-19 Testing Available for Angelenos HERE

Now Free COVID-19 Vaccination Without Appointment HERE
Upcoming International Virtual Programs
The following are international guests of the U.S. government whose
professional appointments in Los Angeles will be virtually arranged by the
International Visitors Council of Los Angeles

Feb 14: Countering Holocaust Distortion and Denial: The Role of New and Traditional Media
Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Germany, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Serbia
Feb 22 - 24: Global Public Health Challenges
Bulgaria, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Greenland, Kuwait, Lebanon, Lithuania, Portugal, Romania, Sierra Leone, Slovenia
Feb 24: Countering Disinformation in the Pacific
New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Samoa
IVCLA is preparing to host in-person programming this April.
We look forward to once again welcoming more remarkable visitors from around the world. In the meantime, as the entire world works together to put an end to the pandemic, IVCLA continues to reach out and stay in contact with our international alumni. If you are an IVLP Alumni who would like to share your thoughts about your L.A. IVLP experience, or if you are an IVCLA member or resource who has stayed in touch with alumni and would like to share your experience, please contact Eleanor Alberg at [email protected].
The International Visitors Council of Los Angeles depends on its members and friends to help support its programs. If you are not an IVCLA Citizen Diplomat, please review our membership benefits here and consider joining — or make a tax-deductible donation here. We need your support now more than ever!
Please make a contribution today.
Editor: Eleanor Alberg
Communications & Events Coordinator
Share your comments with me at [email protected]!
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