From Hagerstown to Ocean City: The State Department's Impact on Maryland

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#State4States: The Department of State has direct impact on the state of Maryland

From Hagerstown to Ocean City: The State Department's Impact on Maryland

On behalf of the American people, the State Department promotes and demonstrates democratic values and advances a free, peaceful, and prosperous world. By leading America’s foreign policy through diplomacy, advocacy, and assistance, the Department keeps the American people safe both at home and abroad and advances our shared economic prosperity. The State Department directly impacts the “Old Line State” of Maryland through public-private partnerships focused on empowering young women, through sister state relationships, and by empowering Maryland organizations that work with vulnerable populations around the world.

First, the State Department impacts Maryland through the WiSci (Women in Science) Girls STEAM Camp program. WiSci is a public-private partnership that brings together a diverse group of female high school students from around the world for a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Design, and Mathematics) education camp with the goal of closing the gender gap through access to education, mentorship opportunities, and leadership training. Four high school students from Maryland have participated in the camp: one in 2015 in Rwanda, two in 2017 in Malawi, and another in Tbilisi, Georgia in 2018. WiSci empowers young women with the knowledge and skillsets to be competitive with their male counterparts during a time of rapid, technological development, providing them with access to high-tech resources, like-minded peers, impactful business connections, and inspiring mentors. 

Secondly, the State Department impacts Maryland through the establishment of sister state programs. On September 5, 2017, Maryland and Jeollanamdo of the Republic of Korea formally became sister states. The occasion was marked with a commemorative planting of a Maryland White Oak tree in front of the Jeollanamdo Provincial Government headquarters. The Sister State Memorandum of Understanding aims to promote trade, business, and entrepreneurship, expand educational opportunities, and foster cultural and artistic exchanges. This sister state partnership benefits both the people of Maryland and the people of Jeollanamdo, and brings about greater people-to-people relationships between the Marylanders and Koreans involved. 

Third, the State Department impacts Maryland by working with Maryland organizations.  Humanity and Inclusion, headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, works with persons with disabilities and other vulnerable populations in situations of conflict, disaster, exclusion, and extreme poverty. Humanity and Inclusion received funding from the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs’ Office of Weapons Removal and Abatement in Fiscal Year 2018 to support its implementation of mine action programs, a life-saving endeavor in many war-torn countries.

From Hagerstown to Ocean City, the State Department continues to pursue avenues to build global relationships with the great people, institutions, and businesses of Maryland. And Marylanders, in return, contribute to international goodwill and mutual understanding, ultimately impacting communities around the globe.

Find out more about the Department of State's impact in American communities at Department of State by State.

Editor's Note: This entry also appears in the U.S. Department of State's publication on Medium.

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