Three Papua New Guineans Visit the United States on the International Visitor Leadership Program (May 9, 2016)

Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea: The U.S. Embassy is pleased to announce that three Papua New Guineans will visit the United States on the U.S. State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP).

Mr. Joel Keimelo (PNG Tourism Promotion Authority), Ms. Delan Anthon (Divine Word University Tourism Lecturer), and Dr. Alfred Mel (PNG National Cancer Centre, Angau Memorial General Hospital, Lae) were recently selected to participate in the U.S. Government’s longest running professional exchange program. They will visit the United States from May 6 through May 28.

Mr. Keimelo’s and Ms. Anthon’s IVLP program, “U.S. Tourism and Economic Development,” will highlight how tourism strengthens local and regional economies in the United States. Additionally, they will examine strategies and incentives used to promote tourism and learn about the infrastructure and economic considerations necessary to support a viable tourism industry. By observing public/private partnerships and the role of state and local tourism bureaus, they will be able to assess examples of sustainable, socially and environmentally responsible tourism. Their IVLP program will include visits to large and small scale ventures with different emphases: cultural and family tourism to adventure and eco-tourism. They will also meet with entrepreneurs and small businesses who successfully engage in the tourism industry.

Dr. Mel’s IVLP program, “Global Health: Building Country Capacity,” will introduce him to the role of the U.S. federal, state and municipal government agencies and non-governmental organizations in developing and implementing public health programs and policies. During his program, Dr. Mel will visit research centers, medical schools, and teaching hospitals to discuss healthcare trends and training programs, and the latest research in the field of public health especially in cancer, stroke, diabetes, childhood, and infectious diseases. The IVLP program will introduce Dr. Mel to international partnerships that promote health awareness, public health campaigns, and advocacy initiatives by government agencies, NGOs and national associations. Dr. Mel will also have opportunities to examine research, prevention, treatment, patient counseling and support services, while he’ll also meet with professional counterparts, medical personnel, and activists to share success stories and challenges.

When IVLP recipients return to PNG, they will apply the lessons learned and information gleaned from their visit in their respective domains.  They will also bring back a wealth of new contacts that will serve to broaden their professional network, thereby benefitting both PNG and the United States.

The Papua New Guinean IVLPers will visit Washington, D.C., Burlington, Vermont, New Orleans, Louisiana, Salt Lake City, Utah, and Honolulu, Hawaii.

The IVLP program is the U.S. Department of State’s premier professional exchange program. Through short-term visits to the United States, current and emerging foreign leaders in a variety of fields experience the United States firsthand and cultivate lasting relationships with their American counterparts and experts from other nations. Professional meetings reflect the participants’ professional interests and support the foreign policy goals of the United States. The Office of International Visitors within the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs manages IVLP projects.