Youth Outreach & Education Coordinator at U.S. Embassy in Macedonia

• Mr. Shalom, you work as a Youth Outreach & Education Coordinator at U.S. Embassy in Macedonia. Could you please tell us more about the work you do as a coordinator and the work of the network EducationUSA?

GAs the Youth Outreach and Education Coordinator, I supervise the implementation of the EducationUSA program in Macedonia. I put together the strategy for the country with the goal of increasing the number of students from Macedonia who choose to study in the United States.

EducationUSA is a global network of more than 400 advising centers supported by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. In Macedonia we have three EducationUSA advising centers in Skopje, Tetovo, and Bitola. Each advising center hosts a Competitive College Club for talented students that prepares them to apply to U.S. Universities through intensive workshops, presentations, one-on-one advising, book clubs, etc. Macedonia is also the recipient of the EducationUSA Opportunity Funds Program which supports the application costs very talented, economically disadvantaged students. Skopje is one of the stops on the EducationUSA Southeastern Europe Tour which takes place annually during the spring.

• You were involved in the organization of the EducationUSA Fair in hotel Marriot in Skopje in April this year. Could you give the readers some more information on what the fair was about, what was its main objective and how many universities took part?

Skopje is one of the stops on the EducationUSA Southeastern Europe Tour, which takes place annually during the spring. During the fair recruiters from American universities promote their institutions and are available to provide information about the application process, majors and specialties, financial aid, campus life, etc. This year we welcomed eleven different institutions at our fair, which is an increase from recent years. You can definitely see an increase of interest from institutions around the United States in students from Macedonia and our region as a whole.

The main goal of our fair is to make American universities more accessible for students in Macedonia and help students in Macedonia find their path to education in the United States.

• What is your overall assessment of the event? Were there a lot of academics and students attending it? Did it live up to your and visitors’ expectations?

This is the second EducationUSA Fair I coordinate and the fourth college fair since I arrived in late 2016. In my opinion, it was a tremendous success. Students came informed and ready with questions, teachers from high schools were more engaged, and all together we doubled our numbers to over 600 visitors. I also appreciate the support we received from MAAA members who showed up to support yet another successful event.

• What would be your next project? Any activities you plan with MAAA members?

This year I am the coordinator of the Embassy’s Independence Day celebration which really takes a large part of my schedule. This is, by far, the largest event of the year with many moving parts and involves all part of the Embassy.

We started working on it in December and every day has been more exciting than the other. Ambassador Baily and Ms. Polk Baily agreed to go with a fresh theme this year which will bring a completely different feel to our event. We are going with “Red, White, and Blue Jeans”. I truly believe that with the great help of my colleagues we will be able to have a successful event.

After the 4th of July I will be preparing for the new school year and as always, MAAA will definitely be part of the activities I am planning.

Interviewed by Angela Dimitrovska


Bulding bridges of cooperation
between the United States and Macedonia