Haiti Alumni Update by Widens Pierre

The lives of exchange alumni have innumerable, adventurous golden opportunities to grab – they only need to start adapting their imagination to the concrete world, and then make their aspirations become a reality. Global UGRAD participants have always received the necessary skills to be effective enough to empower many marginalized places in the world. Particularly, their presence is crucial for countries which are mostly prone to natural disasters, political instability, etc. They are able to come up with innovative solutions while tackling certain issues with a global perspective. Being a Global UGRAD alumnus, I have a proud story to tell the world about how I nurture an adventure idea while residing in a tangled society.

During the Global UGRAD workshop in Washington, D.C, numerous ideas came to my mind about keeping my commitment as a future alumnus. Once I reached my home country, I followed my engagement, and I founded Youth Adventure Entrepreneurs (YAE). YAE is a nonprofit association which promotes and enhances a STEAM-based entrepreneurship education; it helps empower youth, young women, and girls in Haitian communities. I have built this platform in order to empower youth mostly in entrepreneurial activities, and help them become more creative while providing new products or services on the marketplace. Our STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) approach in YAE is the result of our mission to create more youth innovators in the business sector and health care.

To be honest, YAE is the first creative and entrepreneurship platform that I have ever created. It has taken me nights and days to figure out new strategies of making YAE a youth empire. However, the strong interpersonal, leadership, critical thinking, and communication skills gained from the Global UGRAD Program are at the core point of YAE’s foundation. YAE is now on the path to reach many places in the Haitian society. From now on, YAE’s expectation is to have more youth who incorporate themselves into entrepreneurial activities. Therefore, the rights of youth in the Haitian free market economy will be reinforced since Haiti is a democratic nation. Some of my core team collaborators are Haitian exchange alumni of the U.S., including students, graduates, young entrepreneurs, and professionals in diverse areas of study. Moreover, we are now building a live performance show called, “YAE Talks.” YAE Talks is a subsidized platform where young professionals and experts can share their skills and achievements with the Haitian youth community.

All things considered, YAE’s projection in the near future shows highly probability of success and a stellar reputation; currently, we are in the process of expanding. From day to day, the platform has been increasing: many other youth and small ventures are joining this sustainable movement for this coming generation. As a result, YAE’s team and I are very thankful to the U.S. government which allows me to be a young international exchange ambassador. Many improvements are happening all over the world through us, alumni. Although it is mainly based on entrepreneurship, YAE serves as a liaison between alumni and youth to sharing the American culture.

Written by Widens Pierre (Haiti) a Global UGRAD 2015-16 student at Lewis-Clark State College