Meridian International Center Welcomes European Entrepreneurs to the U.S. for the 2016 Young Transatlantic Innovation Leaders Initiative (YTILI)

May 26, 2016

Media Contacts: Monique McSween | (202) 939-5882


Washington, D.C.: On June 1st, Meridian International Center will welcome the participants of the 2016 Young Transatlantic Innovation Leaders Initiative (YTILI).  The 47 fellows representing 42 European countries, will take part in a three-week professional program designed to highlight entrepreneurship and innovation in the United States. YTILI will also create opportunities for the European fellows to work together with American entrepreneurs, small business managers, and other innovative leaders to create long-term, one-on-one relationships that strengthen the global entrepreneurial ecosystem.  Immediately following the conclusion of the program, the Fellows will have the unique opportunity to attend the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) hosted under the auspices of the White House.

The YTILI program is sponsored by the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs of the U.S. Department of State and benefits from the direct involvement and support of U.S. Embassies from throughout Europe who nominated and selected the Fellows. YTILI is part of a broad set of entrepreneurship exchange opportunities that have been implemented by Meridian which include the Young Leaders of the Americans Initiative (YLAI) and the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI).

YTILI Fellows are mid-career professionals from 42 European countries with entrepreneurial ventures and social initiatives that have been successful in their home communities. The 2016 cohort represents a range of endeavors, such as developing mobile apps to transform local industries; engaging youth in their communities; working with refuges and disadvantaged populations; and supporting fellow entrepreneurs through shared spaces, networks, and trainings.


The program will kick off in Washington, DC, with a series of interactive panel discussions and workshops with leading American institutions and experts in entrepreneurship and innovation. The Fellows will also be welcomed by officials from the U.S. Department of States and meet with Google representatives to discuss innovative uses of technology in entrepreneurship.

YTILI Fellows will then spend two weeks working at select fellowship sites in cities across the United States where they will be assigned individual mentors and participate in the day-to-day operations of their host organizations while benefitting from job-shadowing and professional interaction with their American peers. In implementing this part of the program, Meridian is proud to have partnered with local community-based organizations from Albany, NY; Albuquerque, NM; Charlotte, NC; Chicago, IL; Detroit, MI; Huntsville, AL; Pittsburgh, PA; and Seattle, WA.

The program will culminate in San Francisco, where Fellows will present a strategic plan or community action plan reflective of their U.S. experiences and have the unique opportunity to attend the 2016 Global Entrepreneurship Summit in Silicon Valley.  The Global Entrepreneurship Summit, hosted by President Obama, will bring together approximately 1,000 entrepreneurs, investors, educators, and business representatives from around the globe to share ideas and build connections.

YTILI participants will return to their home communities with deep insight into American entrepreneurship and innovation, insights and guidance from shared success stories, and a network of professional connections around the U.S. and Europe.

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The Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs at the U.S. Department of State develops and implements U.S. foreign policy in Europe and Eurasia. The Bureau promotes U.S. interests in the region on issues such as international security, NATO, coordination with the European Union and other regional organizations, support for democracy, human rights, civil society, economic prosperity, counterterrorism, and nonproliferation.

Meridian International Center is a premier nonprofit, global leadership organization headquartered in Washington, DC. Building on more than 55 years of experience, Meridian prepares U.S. and international leaders to meet global challenges and opportunities.  Meridian’s suite of programs delivers the approach and environment for leaders to understand global issues and cultures, exchange ideas, collaborate on solutions, and build valuable relationships.

For further Information please contact with any questions.

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