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2024 Study of the U.S. Institutes Madeleine K. Albright Young Women Leaders Program on Environmental Issues
September 26, 2023

2024 Study of the U.S. Institutes Madeleine K. Albright Young Women Leaders Program on Environmental Issues

Program Description 

Study of the U.S. Institutes (SUSIs) for Young Women Leaders are intensive short-term academic programs whose purpose is to provide groups of undergraduate student leaders with a deeper understanding of the United States while simultaneously enhancing their leadership skills.  The Institutes consist of a four-week academic residency with a balanced series of seminar discussions, readings, group presentations, and lectures.  Site visits, leadership development, cultural activities, and community service complement the coursework and academic sessions.  If conditions allow, the Institutes will include a one-week integrated study tour in the United States.  

SUSI for Young Women Leaders Program enhances participants’ knowledge of U.S. democratic principles and society, culture, values, and institutions, while developing their leadership skills in areas such as critical thinking, communication, decision-making, and management. The Institute will incorporate a focus on American historical events as well as contemporary American life including current political, social, and economic debates in a pluralistic society.

The theme of the 2024 SUSI for Young Women Leaders Program for Central Asian countries is Environmental Issues.  Hosted by Green River College in Auburn, WA, the Institute will examine topics including, but not limited to, climate change, sustainable development, clean energy, conservation, environmental justice, ocean protection, pollution, ecotourism, water access, climate entrepreneurship, sustainable agricultural practices, public health, and the impact of climate change on underserved, youth, and minority populations and communities, including women.  Specific program components may include fieldwork in the Duwamish River to learn about local environmental issues, community service at the Auburn Food Bank, discussions on socio-economic impacts of climate change, and a meeting with Washington State Supreme Court Justice Mary Yu.  

To honor the legacy of the late Secretary Madeleine K. Albright, who served as the first female U.S. Secretary of State from January 1997 to January 2001, the 2023 SUSI program will be adapted to enhance undergraduate young women leaders’ focus on democratic principles and reflect the leadership, values, and achievements of Secretary Albright. The summer program will include increased content related to women’s leadership in public service and U.S. democratic principles and values underlying the U.S. system of federal government. While on the exchange, participants may have the opportunity to engage with U.S. colleges and universities and other U.S. programs and participants that have been affiliated with Secretary Albright and will be encouraged to stay connected as an alumnae group in the future.

The five-week program will tentatively take place from June 21 to July 26, 2024 (subject to availability of funds).  If health, safety, or travel conditions pose significant challenges, the program will switch to a modified virtual format. 

Eligibility Criteria 

Participants are expected to be highly motivated first, second, and third-year undergraduate students from colleges, universities, and other institutions of higher education.  Candidates should demonstrate leadership through academic work, community involvement, and extracurricular activities.  Their fields of study will be varied and may include the sciences, social sciences, humanities, education, business, and other professional fields.

Applicants must:

  • be female;
  • be a citizen of the Republic of Kazakhstan; 
  • be a full-time student of one of the local colleges/universities of Kazakhstan; 
  • demonstrate English language proficiency (speaking, reading, writing, listening);
  • demonstrate interest in the Institute topic (Environmental Issues);
  • be between 18 and 25 years of age;
  • have at least one semester left of their undergraduate studies, and be committed to returning to their home universities following completion of the program;
  • demonstrate strong leadership qualities and potential in their university and community activities;
  • indicate a serious interest in learning about the United States;
  • have a sustained high level of academic achievement, as indicated by grades, awards, and teacher recommendations;    
  • demonstrate commitment to community service and extracurricular university activities;
  • have little or no prior study or travel experience in the United States or elsewhere outside of their home country;
  • be mature, responsible, independent, confident, open-minded, tolerant, thoughtful, and inquisitive;
  • be willing and able to fully participate in an intensive academic program, community service, and educational travel; and
  • be comfortable with campus life, prepared to share living accommodations, and able to adjust to cultural and social practices different from those of their home country.

Program Funding

The program will cover all participant costs, including international and visa travel, travel allowances, domestic travel and ground transportation; book, cultural, mailing and incidental allowances; and housing and subsistence.  If the program is conducted virtually, a technology stipend to participants will be provided.     

Application Package

Before applying for the program, please read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for a better understanding of the program requirements. 

Application package must include the following:

  1. Completed application form; 
  2. Official transcript in English (Please enclose your university grades for the most recent semester. First-year students must submit grades from their final year at a high school, lyceum, or specialized college);
  3. Scanned copy of passport ID page

How to Apply & Application Deadline

Application package must be submitted via e-mail to PASKazakhstan@state.gov no later than 18:00 (Astana time) on Friday, December 1, 2023, with “Application for SUSI for Young Women Leaders” in the subject line. 

All application documents must be sent in one email!

Incomplete applications will be disqualified and will not be reviewed by the SUSI Selection Panel.

Selection updates and timelines 

Applicants selected for a second round will receive email updates about their application status in December-January and will be invited for an interview. 

Finalists of the program will be notified in April 2024. 


Due to the large number of applications, we are unable to provide individual application status updates or feedback to unsuccessful applicants. Please do not contact the U.S. Embassy in Astana with application enquiries.


Please read the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for a better understanding of the program requirements. Other questions related to this program should be sent to PASKazakhstan@state.gov. The program name – SUSI for Young Women Leaders – must be indicated in the subject line of an email.