WASHINGTON, D.C. – The International Leadership Foundation (ILF) is pleased to welcome the 2020 cohort of Civic Fellows during the first ever Virtual ILF Civic Fellowship Program Orientation on Saturday, June 6th, 2020.
This year’s cohort is comprised of 30 diverse and ambitious students from distinguished universities across America. Fellows will intern at federal agencies and congressional offices; in addition, Fellows will also have the opportunity to work on ILF Challenge Teams focusing on the Social Justice Initiative, COVID-19/PPE Relief Effort, and Innovation Spaces. Each Fellow will participate in educational seminars and professional training to develop a deeper understanding of public service and policy.
The Fellows create an exemplary Civic Fellowship Program due to their tireless dedication to service, growth in leadership, and championing advocacy and inclusion above all. Chairman, Dr. Paul Hsu stressed the importance of the Fellowship, “The pandemic’s impact on small businesses is long, deep, and binding.”
The ILF Civic Fellowship program aims to build a pipeline of emerging young leaders who are civic-minded and community-focused. Interim Executive Director Linh Hoang furthers adds, “ILF Fellows are the future agents of change in government and private sectors. ILF is a platform for Fellows to pursue their varied interests and gain deeper insight into the inner workings of government and most importantly take the skills and knowledge they’ve acquired to impact change in their local communities.”
Fellow Sean Lin from Indiana University, intern at Minority Business Development Agency, hopes to make his own mark in the business world by providing minority businesses with the tools they need to achieve growth and success. Sean believes, “minority businesses face their own unique challenges when building the path to their version of the American Dream. While the fight for social justice has recently reached even greater heights, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done.”
The Civic Fellowship Program also offers an opportunity for Fellows to gain a deeper insight into their future career paths.
Fellow Jeremiah Azurin from Harvard University, intern at the State Department, hopes to officially join the Foreign Service full-time later this fall. “I am excited to share this unique experience with the other Civic Fellows this summer who care deeply about AAPI leadership and public service,” said Azurin.
Fellow Rebecca Soo from the University of California at Berkeley, intern at The White House Initiative on Asian American and Pacific Islanders, plans to pursue a career in public policy in human rights, education, and foreign policy after witnessing the effects that this type of legislation has on minority communities. Rebecca said, “ I want to uplift minority communities and research on how to break the glass ceiling that many AAPIs face in the workplace. These issues must be addressed in order to contribute to a brighter, more equitable future for all.”
We join in solidarity with the Black community and those who are peacefully protesting around the country in the continuing struggle against racism and injustice. We strongly condemn police violence and racism in all their forms and deeply grieve the killing of George Floyd in Minnesota.
As we strive to be inclusive and to amplify the voices of those who are marginalized, we must redouble our commitment and efforts - individually and collectively - to support the Black community and engage in this work as agents of change in the United States.
Each of us is called today to stand against injustice and the wanton murders of our fellow citizens, and to renew a nation dedicated to upholding the values of justice and equality for all. We must come together as communities of our allies, friends, and neighbors, business leaders and decision makers to stop this crisis once and for all.