International Visitor Leadership Program


The International Visitor Leadership Program is a professional exchange initiative of the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Annually it brings to the United States approximately 5,000 foreign nationals from all over the world to meet and confer with their professional counterparts and to experience America firsthand. The visitors, who are selected by American Foreign Service Officers overseas, are current or potential leaders in government, politics, the media, education, the arts, business and other fields.

Among the thousands of distinguished individuals who have participated in the International Visitor Leadership Program since its inception almost seven decades ago are more than 290 current and former Chiefs of State and Heads of Government, 2,000 cabinet-level ministers, and many, many other distinguished leaders from the public and private sectors.  Click here to see the list of current IVLP alumni who are current heads of government or chiefs of state.

The invitation to visit the U.S. under the auspices of the International Visitor Leadership Program is extended by U.S. embassies. For that reason, individuals can not apply to participate in the program.

The programs are managed by program officers assigned to the Office of International Visitors, who work in concert with a broad range of private, not-for-profit organizations operating under cooperative agreements with the Department of State.  In addition to program agencies, the International Visitor Leadership Program also relies on the commitment and skills of volunteer-based community organizations across the U.S. whose members offer professional program assistance and home hospitality. These volunteer organizations are known as Councils for International Visitors (CIVs). There are currently more than 90 CIVs in 45 states, under the leadership of Global Ties U.S..

Contact Emily O’Harris to participate as a professional resource or home hospitality host for these delegations.