Entrepreneurs Visit U.S. to Learn and Grow, Will Return Home Agents of Change

Article by:
EO Global
As part of US Department of State initiative, 30 entrepreneurs from around the world are touring U.S. to engage in peer-to-peer learning and relationship-building.

Washington, DC, USA (23 September 2013) – A highly successful joint effort between the United States Department of State and nonprofit Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) is entering its fourth year, as 30 fresh entrepreneurs from around the world have arrived in the U.S. to embark on a three-week journey of business learning, leadership training and networking experiences. “A New Beginning: Entrepreneurship and Business Innovation” creates a peer-to-peer learning environment for promising entrepreneurs from around the world. In selecting high-growth, high-potential entrepreneurs who are committed to growing their businesses and creating new employment opportunities in their communities, the program enhances the visitors’ ability to impact their home economies in meaningful and lasting ways.

The program identifies leaders and innovators from the entrepreneurial community each year, and brings them to the United States for a three-week program of educational experiences, business mentoring and long-term relationship-building. On September 15, delegates arrived in Washington, DC, to meet with local entrepreneurs, government officials and leading academics to begin their journey of learning and relationship building.

“The Entrepreneurs’ Organization is dedicated to helping leading entrepreneurs learn and grow by connecting them to their peers to share experiences and learn from one another,” said Adrienne Cornelsen, a member of EO’s Global Board of Directors. “The program has been truly transformational for the visiting entrepreneurs in years past, and there is another amazing group of people in 2013. At the end of these three weeks, they will go home as agents of change, enabled and motivated to make a lasting impact as leaders in their communities.”

The first three years of the program have demonstrated the power of peer-to-peer learning, as previous participants have already significantly impacted their communities. Examples of the extraordinary stories and successes include:

  • A delegate from Bahrain returned home to run for Parliament, and now holds one of only three parliamentary seats held by women.
  • A program delegate took lessons he learned in the program and has run workshops attended by hundreds to support and train and empower entrepreneurs in his home country of India, including one event featuring more than 300 attendees.
  • A delegate from Brunei decided to franchise her business throughout Asia, and was asked by the Brunei government to create and lead a Franchise Association to help support growth of the economy.
  • A delegate from Brazil returned home, inspired by the impact that supporting entrepreneurship could have on his city, and arranged funding to purchase a historic downtown building to convert to a school of entrepreneurship.

To facilitate the visitors’ transformation into seeds of change, the program boasts several key features, among them a proven educational curriculum based on EO’s Accelerator program, and mentorship and peer-to-peer connections between the delegates and leading American entrepreneurs.

After visiting DC, the participants will continue their tour with visits to Portland, Oregon; Denver, Colorado; Dallas, Texas; and finally, New York City, New York. A New Beginning is a response to President Barack Obama’s June 2009 pledge in Cairo and at the 2010 Presidential Summit on Entrepreneurship to expand exchange programs and opportunities in entrepreneurship.

About A New Beginning

U.S. embassies in 30 countries have selected high-growth, high-potential entrepreneurs who are committed to growing their businesses and creating new employment opportunities in their communities.  Selected delegates have all demonstrated high levels of interest in creativity and innovation. They are forward-thinking, open to new ideas and keenly interested in establishing and expanding business relationships with colleagues and peers in the United States.

U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Office of International Visitors is sponsoring this initiative as part of the prestigious International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). The IVLP brings approximately 5,000 participants to the United States from around the world each year to meet and engage with their professional counterparts. 

The program’s overall planning and logistics are being administered by Meridian International Center (www.meridian.org), a non-profit organization that promotes global leadership through the exchange of ideas, people, and culture. Meridian’s mission is to create innovative exchange, education, cultural and policy programs.

About the Entrepreneurs’ Organization

The Entrepreneurs' Organization is a dynamic, global membership organization of more than 9,500 business owners in 40 countries, with total sales of US$565 billion. Founded in 1987 by a group of young entrepreneurs, EO engages leading entrepreneurs to learn and grow, leading to greater business success and an enriched personal life.  Membership in one of EO’s 131 chapters is by invitation only; the average member is 42 years old with annual revenues of US$59.7 million.

EO is an eco-system for entrepreneurs; we support the entrepreneurial life cycle; we engage the world, and build the next generations of entrepreneurs. The Entrepreneurs’ Organization also operates the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards program, the premier award for undergraduate students that own and run businesses while attending a college or university, as well as the Accelerator Program, a series of quarterly, high-impact learning events that provide business owners with the tools, knowledge, and skills to grow their businesses to more than US$1 million in annual revenue.??​

Conditions of EO Membership Application and Renewal:
Every member who applies or renews their membership agrees to comply with the Policies and Procedures, Bylaws and Code of Conduct of Entrepreneurs' Organization. Current members must complete the online renewal form acknowledging review of the organization's Policies and Procedures, Bylaws and Code of Conduct.

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