The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has arranged a series of courses for the 75 students selected for this year’s International Youth Ambassadors Exchange Program to prepare them for international relations, foreign policy and international etiquette.
The students will be traveling overseas from Aug. 27 through Sept. 6 and would be separated into three groups: Palau and the Philippines; the Solomon Islands and Thailand; and Tuvalu and India, the ministry said.
One Southeast Asian country was paired with another that has diplomatic ties with Taiwan, the ministry said.
The groups will visit agencies involved with the program, participate in exchanges with local think tanks, learn what services local volunteers provide and act as one-day volunteers, the ministry said.
Competition for the program was quite heated this year, and the 75 youth ambassadors were chosen from more than 800 applicants, Department of NGO International Affairs Deputy Director-General Chang Hsiu-chen (張秀禎) said.
The chosen youth ambassadors are to take an intensive four-week course beginning at the end of next month, and representatives from the nations to be visited would be invited to join them, Chang said, adding that this should provide the ambassadors with the knowledge and skills to perform well during their visits.
Of note is a student from Ming Chuan University, surnamed Chen (陳), who has a parent from Thailand and has grown up in Taiwan and Thailand, Chang said.
He is in the unique position of having an in-depth understanding of both cultures, Chang said.
The government hopes that as a youth ambassador, Chen will be able to help promote Taiwan in Thailand, Chang added.
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