Youth Exchange Philly and Egypt


With the support from many gifts to our June Crisis Appeal, over 40 university students in the U.S. and in Egypt participated in our very first virtual youth exchange, ‘How to Succeed as an Innovator.’ These students want to change the world through STEM innovations and you gave them the opportunity this summer to expand their global network.

One of these impressive students is Alia from Egypt. She is a few months shy of 20 years old and currently a student at Cairo University majoring in Biotechnology/ Biomolecular Chemistry. You can tell Alia is going to change the world…”It is my dream to one day get a master’s and Ph.D. degrees in Nanomedicine; one of the promising fields in cancer treatment. I have a belief that to every illness there is a cure, and I pray to God that one day I’ll be among those who find a cure to cancer or even aid in making it more tolerable for patients.”

Through the Innovator Exchange, you matched Alia with a new role model and opened her eyes to an entirely new avenue of curing cancer. Dr. Stephan A. Grupp introduced Alia and her peers to the realities of being an innovator in Cell Therapy and how to succeed in big medicine. She learned first-hand how universities and pharmaceutical companies help bring a new cancer treatment worldwide.

Like most of her peers participating in the exchange, Alia has never traveled to the U.S. Due to the Coronavirus, in-person educational travel abroad programs out of Philadelphia are on hold, and higher education institutions project a 15-25% drop in enrollment by international students. Your first thought may be – where will our next generation of global leaders come from?

With your help, we are looking forward to launching a huge new initiative to ensure Philadelphia youth have international education in 2021. The Citizen Diplomat Academy is in the works. If you want to know more, email

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