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On October 7, we celebrated the Future Leaders Exchange program, the funding and administrative organizations, FLEX students and alumni, and the host families, communities, and schools that make the FLEX exchange possible. See below for highlights of the celebrations throughout October in different FLEX countries! 

FLEX Cake, Alumni Bingo, networking, games, PowerPoint Night, bowling, and more...Visit the FLEX Alumni Instagram page for more highlights!

Congratulations to the winners of the 2022 FLEX Alumni Photo/Video Contest! The FLEX Alumni Photo & Video Contest is an annual competition that encourages FLEX alumni to highlight their alumni experiences. This year, the competition had five categories:

  1. Leading and Learning
  2. Unforgettable Moments
  3. Friendship and Community
  4. Virtual Engagement
  5. Videos, Reels, Shorts

A team of judges from the Bureau and Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S Department of State reviewed all the submissions and chose two winners for each category, first and second place. Thank you to all who submitted, and, once again, congratulations to our winners! To check out all the winning submissions and read the captions, click here!

Unforgettable Moments: “Jailoo Camp '22" 

– Yryskeldi Biimurzaev ’20 

Leading and Learning: “Learning Flex-Ability and Sharing it With Others!” 

– Evelina Absatarova ’05 

Friendship & Community: “Tiny Drops in the Ocean” - Albina Taalaibekova ’17  

The 2023 Iacocca Global Village for Future Leaders application is now open! All FLEX alumni are eligible to receive a tuition scholarship to attend this 5-week program in the US during the summer of 2023. For more information, scan the QR code below. Apply here by 1/15/23!

In this time of unprecedented global challenges and rapidly changing environments, we need leaders who can work and collaborate across boundaries of all kinds, who can excel in a complex and evolving global context and build trusted relationships across diverse sectors, disciplines, and cultures. The Iacocca Global Village experience is uniquely designed to meet the needs of these future leaders, bringing young professionals, entrepreneurs, and advanced university students from every continent to live and work together in an intensive and extremely diverse learning community. In the Village, you work in cross-cultural teams on real leadership challenges for organizations across the globe, develop your personal leadership vision and plan, and build a lifelong network of global colleagues, mentors, and friends. Together, you will create new visions for what leadership means in the future.

Alumni in Slovakia Volunteer to Help Ukrainians in Need

During the first week of the war in Ukraine, Filip Kyselica ’20 saw that his town received hundreds of refugees and noticed that the local refugee center, Camp Zilina, desperately needed volunteers. On March 3, Filip started volunteering there. Filip's effort to help Ukrainians in need inspired Marek Janiga '22 to volunteer, eventually leading him to travel to Ukraine and work with a team to provide essential needs to approximately 1,500 people in the city. Read more about their story here

Alumni Contribute to Local Initiatives to Support Mental Health


Anđela Jovanović ’17 grew passionate about psychology while taking an AP psychology course during her FLEX exchange year. Recently, she used her passion to make a difference in her community. Using the resources and skills gained from the IDEAL 2022 Workshop Project Program, Anđela and a team of alumni collaborated with Prostor, a non-profit organization focused on mental health, to support art therapy sessions. These sessions resulted in an art exhibition to raise money for the organization! Read more about Anđela and her project here!

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Happy Halloween! To get you in the Halloween spirit, check out this photo taken in 2012 of an alumna from Azerbaijan as she prepares for Halloween by carving pumpkins. Can you make out "FLEX" carved into one of the pumpkins? If you want to celebrate quintessential American holidays like Halloween, check with your Alumni Coordinator to see what events are happening near you!

The Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX) Program is a United States Department of State-sponsored program for secondary school students from Armenia, Azerbaijan, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Georgia, Greece, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Mongolia, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Ukraine. The program provides merit-based scholarships for students to travel to the United States, live with a host family, and attend a U.S. high school for a full academic year. Learn more at

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