Georgetown University Student Association President Mike Meaney (SFS ’12) will head to Russia next week as part of a program intended to bolster U.S.-Russia relations.
On the trip, Meaney and the other student body presidents selected for the Kremlin Fellows Program will meet with officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Duma as well as with Russian youth leaders, who will likely visit the United States as part of a similar program in the near future.
Meaney was selected as one of 15 student body presidents to take part in the week-long program, which is sponsored by the Open World Leadership Center. The group includes representatives from Columbia, Stanford, Harvard, Duke, University of Arizona and Oklahoma State University.
Meaney said he hopes the trip will help solidify the university’s role as an institution steeped in international relations.
“It further enhances Georgetown’s reputation as a student body that is actively engaged and playing a substantive role in a way that many other university student bodies are able to do,” he said.
Upon returning from Russia, Meaney will meet with University President John J. DeGioia and Director of the Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies Angela Stent to discuss his experiences.
Last year, then-GUSA President Calen Angert (MSB ’11) participated in the program. Upon his return, he held an event for students featuring Ilya Yashin, the leader of the Moscow branch of the People’s Freedom Party.
Meaney hopes to work with the university to hold a similar forum for students on the future of Russian-American relations.
“Hopefully what this event can accomplish is to continue to establish Georgetown as a place where all types of dialogue that are critical to global affairs take place,” he said.