On Friday, October 4, Winsor welcomed 14 visitors and 3 interpreters as part of the U.S Department of State's International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP)
, the Department's premier professional exchange program. Through short-term visits to the United States, the program enables current and emerging foreign leaders in a variety of fields to experience this country firsthand and cultivate lasting relationships with their American counterparts. Professional meetings reflect the participants' professional interests and support the foreign policy goals of the United States.
Winsor's involvement with the program, arranged locally by WorldBoston, and coordinated by Winsor's Athletic Director Sherren Granese
and Physical Education Head Kendall Quackenbos
, centered around the field of girls' physical education. All 14 visitors hold leadership roles in physical education within the Ministry of Education in Saudi Arabia.
In keeping with the program's specific objectives, the participants were given the opportunity to observe school programs and meet with Winsor faculty and staff engaged in physical education, including curriculum development, student testing, teacher training, and program design. Participants also engaged in discussion aimed to better understand laws and practices in place in the U.S. to encourage participation of girls and women in sports and to ensure access for underrepresented populations.
"It was both an honor and an inspiration to meet so many fellow female physical education directors, teachers and coaches from Saudi Arabia," says Ms. Quackenbos. "It is exciting to think that when they return home and continue to develop their physical education programs, they will be taking a little piece of Winsor with them."
In addition to school visits, the leaders in the program also gain insight into public and private collaborative efforts, including government, business and community programs, that support physical education and empowerment for girls and women.
Each year nearly 5,000 International Visitors come to the U.S. on the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). More than 200,000 International Visitors have engaged with Americans through the IVLP, including more than 500 current or former Chiefs of State or Heads of Government.