US Cultural Ambassador with Saudi Young Leaders Exchange




Modest stipend provided. (This is in addition to meal, housing and transportation expenses being covered.)

Hours per week

full time, weekdays and weekends for 3 weeks!



Application Deadline


Start Date


End Date



United States


Transformative Leadership, Community Engagement & Social Entrepreneurship

Legacy International seeks U.S. student leaders to serve as “Cultural Ambassadors”/ interns in the Saudi Young Leaders Exchange Program (SYLEP).

Following successful 2014 – 2017 Saudi Young Leaders Exchange Programs, Legacy International is pleased to welcome a new delegation of Saudi young leaders to the U.S. in July, 2018.

The Saudi Young Leaders Exchange Program (SYLEP) is a multi-phased leadership experience for 32 undergraduate or recently-graduated Saudi participants between the ages of 22-26, and 3 U.S. university students (undergraduate or graduate). SYLEP 2018 seeks to build leadership skills, civic responsibility, appreciation for cultural diversity, and community engagement and volunteerism among Saudi university students.

The goals of this program are to promote mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of Saudi Arabia, prepare young leaders to become responsible citizens and contributing members of their communities, and develop leadership skills among Saudi youth. They will observe how individuals, non-governmental organizations, and government entities address community needs through public, private, and joint initiatives.

Over the course of the program, participants will engage in a stimulating series of trainings and experiences while interacting with dozens of American volunteers, program clients, host families, and community leaders. Participants will gain skills in leadership, program design, critical thinking, and community engagement while deepening their respect and appreciation for diversity. During the program, participants will divide into subgroups and visit different cities (Austin, TX; Chicago, IL; & Pittsburgh, PA) in the United States. They will spend an extended weekend living with American host families to gain more insights into American daily life. Participants will visit various organizations, learning about a wide range of project models and youth leadership opportunities, and participate in community service. Upon their return home, they conduct follow-on projects in their home communities or university campuses, supported by Legacy International.

As part of SYLEP, Cultural Ambassadors serve as liaisons, helping their Saudi peers understand how Americans think about their future careers and how to prepare for them, as well as personal civic responsibility. Through a series of trainings, hands-on experience, and contact with dozens of volunteers, clients, host families, and other community members, participants will gain skills in program design, critical thinking, community engagement, and entrepreneurship while deepening their respect for diversity.

Cultural Ambassadors’ impressions:

2018 Dates for U.S. Cultural Ambassadors: July 9 – August 1, 2018

  • July 9 – U.S. Cultural Ambassadors arrive (Washington, DC)
  • July 10 – U.S. Cultural Ambassadors Orientation. Saudi participants arrive (Washington, DC)
  • July 11-17 – Orientation & Leadership Clinic (Washington, DC)
  • July 18-19 – Dialogue & Diversity Retreat (Sweet Briar College in Amherst, VA) 
  • July 20 – 27 – Community Immersion (Austin, TX; Chicago, IL; Pittsburgh, PA)
  • July 28– 31 – Innovation Summit (Washington, DC)
  • August 1 – Departures

Cultural Ambassadors should be:

  • Currently enrolled in a U.S. college or university – Junior or Senior Undergraduates or Graduate. Recent graduates will also be considered.
  • A citizen or permanent resident of the U.S. Students from outside the U.S. currently studying in the U.S. (not eligible).
  • Committed to leadership and community engagement, and an active participant in a university or local service organization, club or project OR active leadership roles.
  • Available for full dates of the Cultural Ambassador experience – July 9 – Aug 1. (The program requires full time engagement with some travel; full weekdays and weekends. These dates include orientation before the Saudi students arrive into the U.S.)
  • Interested in and receptive to Middle Eastern cultures.
  • An experienced traveler, with at least one significant cross-cultural learning experience abroad or in the U.S.
  • Preferable, but not required if the Cultural Ambassadors reside or study in one of the host communities being visited for part of the program: Pittsburgh, PA, Chicago, IL or Austin, TX.

What will Cultural Ambassadors do?:

  • Guide the Saudi students’ understanding of how entrepreneurship is viewed and organized in the U.S. through informal conversations and during post event debriefs.
  • Serve as hosts to 10-12 Saudi university students during their 8-day stay in the host community: 1) accompany the group during events (meetings, trainings and service projects); 2) develop and lead some evening social activities; and 3) assist Legacy’s SYLEP staff with some program support tasks.
  • Support Legacy’s staff team to implement SYLEP’s social media strategy (gathering stories, writing copy or blog posts, photographs, etc.)
  • If from the host university and community, the Cultural Ambassador may play a role in helping plan some aspects of the Community Immersion week with Legacy’s partner based in that community.
  • Participate in the “Innovation Summit” where Cultural Ambassadors will: 1) lead a 30 minute “skill building training session” on a topic one has expertise in (for example – effective public speaking, developing a budget, how to recruit volunteers.); 2) serve as an adviser to the Saudis students as they develop their follow-on project plans.
  • Cultural Ambassadors will have the opportunity to apply to go to Saudi Arabia and attend the SYLEP conference to be in the Fall or Winter of 2018. (Tentative, pending Embassy approval and funding. There may be space for just one Cultural Ambassador.)

What will Cultural Ambassadors gain?

  • Enhance one’s insights into Middle Eastern culture, in particular, Saudi Arabia;
  • Engage with emerging leaders from a different culture, while sharing approaches to common problems and gaining insights into new ways to approach one’s own efforts in the U.S.;
  • Gain insights into one’s own leadership style;
  • Develop as a leader with cross-cultural competency;
  • Develop skills in group management, managing group dynamics and training;
  • Gain new perspectives and ideas one may draw upon in their own entrepreneurship efforts.

What expenses will be covered?

As a Cultural Ambassador in SYLEP, Legacy will cover:

  • During the Community Immersion, housing (if needed) & meals (also, as needed);
  • Transportation to and from the host community to Washington, DC;
  • Hotel and meals during the “Leadership Clinic” and “Innovation Summit” in Washington, DC;
  • Program costs directly related to activities organized by Legacy (for example, a group sightseeing tour in DC);
  • Transportation costs associate with participation during the Community Immersion week;
  • Modest stipend provided. (This is in addition to meal, housing and transportation expenses being covered.)

SYLEP is initiated and supported by the Embassy of the United States in Saudi Arabia.

How To Apply

Please send 1) a cover letter, 2) resume, and 3) one letter of support from a faculty adviser or other mentor who is familiar with your leadership activities to: Leila Baz;

Deadline: March 16, 2018