Programs & Events
Gala Event to Bid “Selamat Jalan” to 40 YES students and “Welcome” to 50 ETAs
On January 13, Ambassador Paul Jones hosted a high tea for 40 very excited Malaysian high school students who will be participating in the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) Program sponsored by the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by Antarabudaya Malaysia, the local partner of the American Field Service (AFS). As an added bonus, 50 newly-arrived American Fulbright English Teaching Assistants (ETAs), administered by the Fulbright Commission at the Malaysian American Commission on Educational Exchange (MACEE), and supported by the U.S. State Department and the Malaysian Government, joined the festivities and enjoyed networking with the YES students. Alumni from various U.S. government-sponsored exchange programs also attended the reception and took the opportunity to meet the YES students and the ETAs, and shared their U.S. exchange program experiences.
Under the YES Program, these students chosen for their leadership potential, will live with American families and study with American students in high schools all across the U.S.A. for the next six months.
The ETA program places recent American college graduates as English teaching assistants in schools around the world, to help improve students’ English language abilities and knowledge of the United States, while at the same time increasing the ETA’s own knowledge of the language and culture of the host country. The 50 ETAs will be assigned to schools in Terengganu, Johor and Pahang for the next 10 months.
The Deputy Minister of Higher Education Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah was present at the High Tea.
During the High Tea, Ambassador Jones said these two programs would help strengthen Malaysia-U.S. relations. He stated that he strongly believes that the relationship between two countries begins with their people, whose bonds and affection towards each other will in turn deepen the connection between the countries. He also said that the program is important for the young generation of both countries to understand other cultures besides their own, and to become more informed and open-minded about the world surrounding them.
Media from Sin Chew Daily, the Chinese-language daily, Bernama, the National News Agency and the national Radio-TV station were present and the stories were published in the dailies on January 14.