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Today, 280 business and social entrepreneurs from 37 countries in Latin America, the Caribbean, and Canada began the 2022 Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI) Fellowship Program.  Over the next six months, the YLAI Fellows will collaborate with companies and social enterprises in 20 U.S. cities to deepen relationships and increase business ties between the United States and the Americas.  The YLAI Fellows will conclude the program in July 2022 with a Closing Forum and will join over 1,000 YLAI Fellowship Program alumni.

Launched in 2015, YLAI is the Department of State’s flagship program to empower emerging entrepreneurs from the Western Hemisphere with the training, tools, networks, and resources needed to strengthen economic and social development across the region.  In addition to the yearly fellowship program, YLAI offers an active online network that provides young leaders through the Americas with access to courses, resources, and opportunities to collaborate.

The 2022 YLAI fellows were selected through a competitive application process, with over 2,300 eligible applicants.  They work in diverse industries including clean energy, health care, technology, arts and culture, agriculture, hospitality, and marketing.  We invite you to read their profiles here .

The YLAI Fellowship Program is funded by the U.S. Department of State and implemented in 2022 by IREX.  Follow the 2022 YLAI Fellowship Program on social media at #YLAI2022.  For press inquiries, please contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at  For more information on joining the free YLAI network or how to apply for the upcoming YLAI fellowship program, please visit

U.S. Department of State

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