x Generation Next Youth Leadership Initiative
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    Generation Next
    A U.S.-Austria Youth Leadership Initiative
    The Generation Next Youth Leadership Initiative is an exchange program funded by the U.S. Embassy
    in Austria that aims goal to engage and inspire a generation of Austrians
    committed to increasing mutual respect and tolerance for cultural differences
    through leadership training and exposure to best practices in intercultural engagement and dialogue.

Program Information

The Generation Next Youth Leadership Initiative combines leadership training and community engagement with exposure to best practices in working with refugee and immigrant communities with the goal of bringing new perspectives to local, national, and global integration issues.

This will be done by introducing emerging leaders to effective design and implementation of community-based activities that help grow a ‘whole community ecosystem,’ one that draws in diverse representation to build communities which welcome and foster equal opportunities for all residents. The program will select and guide a corps of young leaders to collaborate, develop and implement action plans that bring communities together to address integration of immigrant and refugees by developing long-term transatlantic networks.

This program consists of three distinct phases:

1. Leadership Boot Camp in Vienna

One hundred emerging leaders will be selected to convene in Vienna to take part in a two-day leadership skills development training. Participants in this training will be eligible to interview to become one of 18 Leaders of Gen Next who will be chosen to participate in the U.S. Leadership Training.

2. Young Leaders Exchange

Virtual collaboration will take place over 2.5 months for the Leaders of Gen Next to become oriented to immigrant and refugee integration issues, responses and best practices in Austria and the United States, as well as American culture and history of civic engagement.

In July participants will have opportunities to demonstrate and fine-tune their skills through intensive leadership training in the United States through, site visits, seminars and community service activities with organizations and institutions in four U.S. cities: Baltimore, Des Moines, and San Diego, and Washington, D.C.

The U.S. Leadership Training will introduce participants to diversity in America, and ways in which immigrant communities are integrated into cities. Participants will conclude their training with a capstone in Washington, D.C. where they will shadow organizations implementing projects which support integration of refugees and immigrants into the community. During this time, they will design their action plan for a post-program project, and to work toward continued collaboration with the host organization.

3. Generation Next Congress

In collaboration with the U.S. organization at which they shadowed, participants will work in groups of two to design and implement education and service projects that highlight the learning that took place over the course of the program. All Leaders of Gen Next and representatives from their organizations will meet in Vienna for first Generation Next Youth Leadership Congress to report on the outcome of their projects, reconnect with peers and mentors, and develop new networks and opportunities for cooperation with other Austrian young leaders and organizations.


The U.S. Embassy in Austria will together recruit 100 rising Austrian leaders committed to increasing mutual respect and tolerance for cultural differences to bring about sustainable change on the local, national, European, and global level.


  1. Current undergraduate student pursing a degree at an accredited Austrian university or Fachhochschule
  2. Able to commit 3-4 hours a week to the virtual program (April-June 2017)
  3. Able to travel to Vienna 10-12 March 2017
  4. Able to travel to the United States from 19-27 July 2017 and Vienna in November 2017
  5. Able to design and implement a meaningful post-program activity
Department of State seal and Embassy of Vienna seal

Program Calendar

30 November- 31 January 2017

Application Open

13-17 February 2017

Leadership Boot Camp Finalists Notified

10-12 March 2017

Leadership Boot Camp in Vienna

20-30 March 2017

Selection of Leaders of Gen Next

10 April – 30 June 2017

Virtual Programming for U.S. Leadership Training

9-27 July 2017

U.S. Leadership Training

1 September- 3 November 2017

Post-program Project Implementation

October 2017

Post-program Webinar

November 2017

Generation Next Youth Leadership Initiative Integration Congress in Vienna


If you are a committed young Austrian leader with ideas that could bring new perspectives to refugee and immigration integration at the local, national and global level, please consider applying to this program. Application will close promptly on 10 February 2017 at 23:59 (Eastern Standard Time).



A complete application packet includes:

  1. Biographical Information

  2. Resume/CV (English)

  3. Official Transcript or Certificate of Enrollment at accredited Austrian university or Fachhochschule

  4. Copy of Passport

  5. Three Short Essays:
    1. In your opinion, how can youth leadership bring new perspectives to challenges in immigration and integration at the local level, national level and the European level?
    2. What activities, programs or initiatives have you worked on in the start of your leadership journey? Please attach any supplementary information to showcase your achievements at the end of this application.
    3. Thinking about your future as a leader, including education and work experience, and where you see yourself and the world in 2030, develop what your resume as a leader will look like in 2030.

    Please ensure to submit all of the required documents. We are unable to consider applications with missing documents.

About Cultural Vistas

Founded in 1963, Cultural Vistas is a nonprofit exchange organization promoting global understanding and collaboration among individuals and institutions. We develop international professional experiences that create more informed, skilled, and engaged citizens. Our programs empower people to drive positive change in themselves, their organizations, and society.

For more information about Cultural Vistas, please visit culturalvistas.org

For more information on the U.S. Embassy on Austria, visit at.usembassy.gov and join its social communities on Facebook and Twitter.

Contact Us

For more information about the Generation Next Leadership Initiative, please contact Cultural Vistas at GNYLI@culturalvistas.org