IYLEP Undergraduate


IYLEP for undergraduate students is roughly a four-week program that offers an opportunity to 87 undergraduate students in Iraq to develop professional skills, expand their leadership capacity, build new understandings of civic engagement and diversity, and cultivate lasting relationships across the world.

If selected, participants will engage in a pre- and post-program online course, attend a pre-departure orientation in Iraq, participate in an arrival orientation, travel to a U.S. Host University across the United States, and then travel to Washington D.C. for a closing conference. This will be followed by a six-month implementation period where participants implement a project in their home communities. In addition, a virtual alumni conference in Spring 2024 will be held to celebrate program close and to assist alumni in furthering their goals.

Program Goals

  1. Develop skills in leadership and civic engagement among participants enabling them to be active change makers in their communities;
  2. Foster a respect for diversity and inclusion and a stronger understanding between participants of different ethnic, religious, and national backgrounds in Iraq and the U.S.; and
  3. Enhance professional skills to advance participants’ careers and community service passions.

Program Components


The program consists of virtual pre and post-exchange segments called BRIDGE. These segments are aimed at preparing you for your exchange and return home. BRIDGE will last 3 to 4 weeks and will give you the opportunity to begin the cultural sharing and connection building that make the IYLEP program truly special.

Week 1: Orientation (TBD)

Participants arrive in the United States at a yet-to-be-announced location and students will engage in academic, professional, social, and cultural activities.

Weeks 2-3: Host Universities in the U.S. (TBD)

The cohort breaks into two groups and spends two weeks with a host university in the United States. Each university will focus on leadership, civic engagement, and relevant issues while providing students with the opportunity to engage with American communities.<./span>

Week 4: Conference in Washington, D.C.

Full group reunites for program synthesis, professional development, and closing activities.

Post Program

Upon returning home, participants begin implementing the ideas they cultivated throughout the U.S. segment while preparing for the virtual alumni workshop in Spring 2024.


IYLEP for undergraduate students is sponsored and funded by the U.S. Embassy, Baghdad. The United States government will pay for international transportation to and from the U.S., orientations, program and visa fees and administration, lodging and meals, some cultural activities, educational materials, accident and sickness insurance, and a modest stipend. Participants will stay in university accommodations, hotels, and conference centers.

Participants are responsible for expenses related to the application process (copying, mailing, photographs, etc.), passport fees, and spending money for souvenirs and other items in the U.S.