East-West Center Delegation Visited South Asian Countries

By Kamal Raj Sigdel (APLP, 08-09)

Sigdel, a journalist based in Kathmandu, was an EWC fellow from Nepal for the Asia Pacific Leadership Program 2008/09.

Karen Knudsen and Mary Hammond with Alumni from the EWCA Kathmandu Chapter.

As part of the East-West Center’s move to strengthen its ties with Nepal and other South Asian countries and to prepare grounds for the Center’s 50th anniversary in 2010, an EWC delegation completed its four-day visit to Nepal from Sept. 12 to Sept. 15, 2009.

The delegation, which arrived in Kathmandu on Sept. 12, 2009 completing its similar programs in Dhaka, Bangladesh, organized and participated in number programs among EWC alumni and other prospective students and researches in Kathmandu.

The EWC delegates — Dean of the EWC Education Program Mary Hammond and EWC Director of External Affairs Karen Knudsen — met with over 100 prospective students interested in learning more about EWC scholarship opportunities and EWC alumni and the local media.

Karen Knudsen receiving a gift from Dr. Sharma, current Nepalese Ambassador to USA and President of the EWCA Kathmandu Chapter.

On Sept. 15, 2009 an informative program, open for all interested, about research and study opportunities at EWC was organized at the U.S. Education Foundation in Nepal. During the program, Hammond made a comprehensive presentation about EWC programs and fellowships, while current and past students of the EWC based in Kathmandu shared their experiences they gained while studying at EWC in Hawaii.

“The East-West Center is proud to count many Nepalese civic, business and academic leaders among its alumni since the Center was founded nearly 50 years ago,” said Knudsen. She expressed her optimism that the country visits would help better connect with those who are part of EWC community in South Asia, along with prospective students who may soon take their place among future generations of EWC scholars.

EWC has been providing educational scholarships, conducting policy-relevant research, and hosting professional exchanges focused on key issues in the Asia Pacific region.

Established by the U.S. Congress in 1960, the EWC works to strengthen relations and understanding among the peoples and nations of Asia, the Pacific, and the US through cooperative education, research and dialogue.

The delegations will be busy for the next couple of days in New Delhi.