National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations 2020 Internship and Summer Scholars Program Underway

Participation Increases in Popular Student Program


Washington, D.C.: The National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations (“National Council”) Annual 10-week University Student Internship and Summer Scholars Program began on May 26, 2020. Keynoting the inaugural session – and serving as the lead lecturer and resource specialist for the duration of the program – was Dr. John Duke Anthony, the National Council’s Founding President and CEO. Dr. Anthony provided background, context, and perspective regarding the Council’s vision and educational mission together with its achievements over the course of the Council’s 37-year history. This year, 31 students – a record high number – are participating in the summer youth leadership development program from academic institutions around the globe.

Students in the National Council's 2020 Summer Intern and Scholars Program.

The National Council’s 2020 Summer Intern and Scholars Program is being administered entirely online. The rigorous, digitally-driven program and agenda provide a range of rich and exhilarating opportunities for participants.

A core component of the summer’s twice-weekly academic seminars has the participants interacting with Dr. Anthony and National Council staff together with an array of internationally-renowned scholars on the Arab region, the Middle East, and the Islamic world. With a particular focus on Arabia and the Gulf, the seminars examine the region’s governments and politics in addition to its people’s respective needs, concerns, and continuing quests for modernization and development amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. The seminars are also designed to enable the students to hone their analytical, writing, and public speaking skills that will serve them in whatever paths their future careers might take. In advance of each seminar session, the students read, critique, and respond to assigned publications written by specialists with first-hand experience in the region.

The National Council’s 2020 Summer Internship Program is being administered entirely online. The program provides the participants virtual visits to institutions of the Executive and Legislative branches of government, national security policymaking, diplomacy, and international business. Combined with the two-and-a-half month long academic seminars and the opportunities to improve their communications and critical thinking skills, the web-based program enables the interns and summer scholars to have a rich and varied educational experience in the nation’s capital.

The National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations Summer Internship and Scholars Program provides a fertile training ground and an invaluable experience for young leaders interested in careers devoted to bridging divides and enhancing the U.S.-Arab relationship.

Among the program’s numerous highlights is the students’ participation in an intensive two-day digital leadership development conference like no other, the National Council’s Model Arab League, which to date has more than 50,000 alumni. The experience provides the participants an opportunity to demonstrate their ability to speak, write, and edit quickly, clearly, and effectively, in addition to practicing parliamentary procedure and drafting resolutions, while also learning how to represent in character a real life Arab diplomat tasked with representing their country in competition with other diplomats.

About the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations: Founded in 1983 and based in Washington, D.C., the National Council is an American non-profit, non-governmental, educational organization. The Council pursues its educational mission through nine programs, projects, events, and activities. Each is dedicated to enhancing American awareness and appreciation of the extraordinary benefits that the United States has long derived from its special relationships with countries in the Arab region – and vice versa.

At the center of the National Council’s efforts to advance American knowledge and understanding of Arab culture, societal dynamics, and systems of governance are the Council’s flagship education, training, and leadership development programs. These are designed to elevate the leadership skills and empirical Arab-centric educational experiences of the emerging generation of young Americans and Arabs. Upon their shoulders will rest the responsibility for ensuring that the relationships between the American and Arab peoples are continuously strengthened, improved, and sustained far into the future.

Information about the Council can be found at

National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations COVID-19 Update

Due to concerns about COVID-19, the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations physical office is temporarily closed. The Council is still operating virtually, and can be reached by its same phone and email contact coordinates. The remaining Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League conferences for the 2019-2020 Academic Year, including the National University and National High School programs, have been canceled.

National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations


At the Cutting Edge: The National Council’s Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League

National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations Founding President & CEO Dr. John Duke Anthony writes to students about what is possible through the National Council’s flagship student-focused initiative, the Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League. Please share with any students who might be interested in or benefit from this program.

Fall is upon us. September is back-to-school time. You and countless millions of other students are hitting the books.

What Do You Want to Do?

What are you seeking to achieve this academic year?

Do you envision yourself as a leader? What kind? Diplomat? Policymaker? Opinion formulator? Teacher? Military officer? Entrepreneur?

Whatever your answer, do you possess the necessary and essential skills that are characteristic of great leaders?

For instance, can you:

  1. Debate within 45 seconds;
  2. Speak clearly, rapidly, and effectively;
  3. Write clearly, rapidly, and effectively;
  4. Edit clearly, rapidly, and effectively;
  5. Deploy parliamentary procedure;
  6. Organize a coalition;
  7. Draft public policy resolutions;
  8. Cultivate respect among your peers; and
  9. Empathize with others’ needs, interests, and concerns?

This academic year, if you can manage to master only one of these vital leadership skills, you will never be the same as before. Imagine what you might be able to accomplish if you can learn to employ all nine!

Students utilize parliamentary procedure during Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League sessions

Students utilize parliamentary procedure during Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League sessions. Understanding and utilizing basic rules of meetings helps to train future leaders how to consider viewpoints and make decisions in a fair, consistent, and effective manner.

At the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations, cultivating these skills in students has long been our focus. In no way are we new at this – educating and training the leaders of tomorrow is something we have done for decades.

The diamond in the National Council’s tiara, so to speak, is its Youth Leadership Development Program / Model Arab League (YLDP/MAL). Like nothing else, the program prepares students to be knowledgeable, well-trained, and effective citizens as well as civic, private sector, and public affairs leaders.

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CCUSAR NEWSLINES NewsletterThe Carolinas Committee on U.S.-Arab Relations (CCUSAR), with Dr. Joe P. Dunn serving as Director, is an affiliate of the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations. Dr. Dunn is an alumni of the Malone Fellowship in Arab and Islamic Studies Program, the coordinator of the Southeast Model Arab League, and the faculty advisor heading the Converse College Model Arab League program. CCUSAR recently published its Spring 2018 “NEWSLINES” newsletter featuring:

  • an essay on “My ‘Gateway’ to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia” by Converse College student Laura Gill, summarizing a study visit to Saudi Arabia made possible by her participation in the Model Arab League program;
  • recaps from the 2018 Southeast and National Model Arab League debate forums where Converse College won top delegation awards;
  • a Model Arab League testimonial, “The Benefits of Debate: A Call to Support Model Arab League Participation,” from a South Carolina high school student;
  • a reflection from Dr. Dunn, titled “Planting Trees and Building Orchards,” about the educational community that Converse College’s Model Arab League program has fostered; and
  • a book review of Nadia Murad’s The Last Girl: My Story of Captivity, and My Fight Against the Islamic State.

The full issue of CCUSAR’s Spring 2018 NEWSLINES is available for download through the link immediate below.

DOWNLOAD “CCUSAR NEWSLINES (Spring 2018)” (.pdf file)

Fall 2016 Model Arab League Opportunities

2016-17 Model Arab League registration is open!

Students at a Model Arab League conference.

The National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations cordially invites you and your students to participate in a Model Arab League conference this fall. Model Arab League is a debate-based simulation of the 22-member League of Arab States open to both high school and university students.

Each year thousands of students participate in Model Arab Leagues across the United States and the world. Through participation in the Model Arab League program students develop essential skills from leadership and public speaking to critical thinking and writing, all while also gaining practical, immediate knowledge about a critical region – the Middle East and the Arab world.

Model Arab League students vote during a conference in Washington, DC.

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Council Chronicle Vol. 9, No. 2 Now Available

The National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations is pleased to provide the 29th edition of the Council Chronicle, the Council’s periodic newsletter. The Chronicle seeks to keep the Council’s alumni, donors, and other supporters informed and updated, expanding the nature and extent of the Council’s efforts in pursuit of its vision and mission. One among other efforts to do so on an ongoing basis is achieved by presenting highlights and special reports on the Council’s programs, projects, events, and activities. For new readers interested in learning more about the Council’s vision and mission, and for ongoing supporters keen to keep abreast of the Council’s accomplishments, together with the ways and means it utilizes to pursue both objectives, please read on and visit the Council’s website at

ACCESS Council Chronicle Vol. 9, No. 2 (.pdf)

Model Arab League pictures from Council Chronicle, Vol. 9, No. 2.

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2016 Rocky Mountain Model Arab League Pictures

The National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations’ 2016 Rocky Mountain Model Arab League was held March 4-6 in Denver, Colorado.

Some pictures from the conference are available below.

Click ‘Continue Reading’ to view the full gallery.

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