Mansfield Center

Mansfield Center

YSEALI Professional Fellows


YSEALI Professional Fellows Program – Civic Engagement

The YSEALI Professional Fellows Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State and managed by the Mansfield Center. With a  focus on Civic Engagement, adult professionals ages 25-35 from Southeast Asia come to the U.S. for a five-week program in either a spring or fall cohort designed to promote mutual understanding, enhance leadership and professional skills, and build sustainable partnerships between emerging leaders from Southeast Asia and the U.S.

As a program of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI), bright young leaders from Southeast Asia are engaged in month-long fellowships, in which they are placed in similar U.S. organizations as a hands-on approach to developing professional skills that can be applied to their home communities, while also building sustainable cross-cultural partnerships.

Southeast Asian fellows arrive in Missoula, Montana for a short orientation, followed by a month-long fellowship in Montana or with our program partners in Colorado, North Dakota, South Dakota, the state of Washington, or Wyoming. The program culminates in Washington, DC at the Professional Fellows Congress, a three-day networking and leadership conference, along with approximately 300 Professional Fellows from around the world. Once home, fellows implement individual projects based on their U.S. fellowship experience.

Community Involvement

Those based in the U.S. who are interested in participating can engage in one or both of the following ways:

  • Serve as a professional fellowship host to one or more Southeast Asian fellows and have an opportunity to travel to their fellows’ country all-expense-paid, as a continuation of the professional relationship that was begun in the U.S.

  • Serve as a host family, in a capacity suitable to your situation: hosting fellows for an evening at your home, at a community event, or providing a one- to three-week homestay experience.

Those interested in participating in either a professional participant capacity or as a host family should contact Anne Hanson for more information:

You can read about participant experiences, of both Southeast Asian and U.S. participants, on our participant blog.


For more information, contact program manager Anne Hanson.