New J-1 Secretary Marie Royce pledges support for cultural exchange programmes
Short on time? Here is what you should know about Marie Royce, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs nominee:
- Marie Royce will be tasked with leading the State Department’s exchange programmes, including J-1 exchanges.
- Royce impressed with the strong bipartisan support for J-1 exchanges, promised transparency and collaboration with Congress.
- Royce is an ACYPL exchange alumna.
- The Alliance for International Exchange has congratulated Royce on her Senate confirmation
Following the confirmation hearing, Mark Overmann, Vice President of External Affairs at InterExchange, shared his perspectives of Marie Royce and her background.
“Calling herself a passionate champion of people-to-people exchanges, Marie Royce pledged to strengthen and improve Department of State exchange programmes and work closely with Congress to support the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program (EVP).
Department of State exchange programmes provide participants ‘real world experiences in the U.S. that foster credibility and trust,’ Royce said during her confirmation hearing last Wednesday to be Assistant Secretary of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA).
Responding to a question from Sen. Ben Cardin (D-MD) — who called J-1 exchanges ‘an incredible programme’ — Royce noted that she is impressed with the strong bipartisan support for J-1 exchanges and will collaborate with Congress in a transparent way on this important public diplomacy programme.”
Royce will lead the State Department’s exchange programmes, including the J-1 EVP.
Read more from Mark Overmann on what he believes the cultural exchange community can expect from Marie Royce, based on her resume and testimony.
Royce comes with a background in cultural exchange
Royce served as an American Council for Young Political Leaders (ACYPL) delegate to Hungary and Poland in 2001. She said, “As a delegate to Hungary and Poland in the American Council of Young Political Leaders (ACYPL) program, I experienced the effectiveness of these bi-partisan programs. ACYPL, promotes mutual understanding and cultivates long lasting relationships among next generation leaders. It was an honor for me to later serve as Secretary of the Board.”
Royce also served as a Trustee of Meridian International and was the recipient of the American Women for International Understanding (AWIU) “Internationalism Award” in 2013.
“If confirmed, I would aim to strengthen our people-to-people ties even further. I am honored to be appointed to this important position, and I will focus all my efforts on improving the vital mission of these programs,” Royce said in her statement to the confirmation committee.
Alliance for International Exchange supportive of Royce
Ilir Zherka, Executive Director of the Alliance for International Exchange, released this statement following the confirmation hearings:
“The Alliance for International Exchange congratulates Ms. Marie Royce on her Senate confirmation to be Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs. Ms. Royce brings a strong understanding of international exchange programs, which support U.S. foreign policy and strengthen our economy. We look forward to continuing working together with the U.S. Department of State in supporting our national security interests.”
US Department of State to present at 2018 WETM-IAC
Delegates to the 2018 WETM-IAC in Seville on 17-19 March will have the opportunity to receive the latest updates from representatives of the US Department of State. Branch Chief Darra Dirska and Program Analyst Stacey Gomelsky will speak on on summer work and travel, internship, trainee and au pair programmes and regulations of the J-1 Visa Exchange Visitor Program.
Source: Mark Overmann, Vice President of External Affairs at InterExchange
Source: Alliance for International Exchange Press Release, January 2018
Source: Statement by Marie Royce, 7 March 2018