15 June 2012
Oliver jets off to G20 Summit
RMIT University student Oliver Theobald was one of 150 youth representatives around the world who attended the 2012 G8 & G20 Youth Summit in Washington DC this month.
Oliver Theobald (left) and the G20 Australian Youth Delegates with Prime Minister Julia Gillard at the pre-departure briefing in Canberra.
The five-day summit took place at George Washington University, where representatives discussed and proposed solutions to current global issues.
The summit involved intense negotiations, a final communiqué presented to the White House, and panel discussions with prominent leaders in international politics.
Mr Theobald was sponsored by RMIT to gain an insight into the inner workings of a G20 summit, and debated similar topics parallel to the main G20 conference held by world leaders.
The program featured several high-profile speakers, among them Menaka Nayyar, Deputy Director in the Office of Global Youth Issues from the US Department of State; and Dr Nicole Goldin, Senior Policy Advisor from United States Agency of International Development (USAID).
The trip was organised through Global Voices, a non-profit organisation that seeks to connect young Australians with other youth delegates around the world, and promotes the participation in foreign policy both in Australia and at important diplomatic forums abroad.
RMIT's partnership with Global Voices is one that benefits students like Mr Theobald, who is studying a Bachelor of Arts (International Studies) in the School of Global Studies, Social Science and Planning.
Students also met Prime Minister Julia Gillard in Canberra for a pre-departure briefing, and Australian Ambassador Kim Beazley at the Australian Embassy in Washington.
It was an opportunity which allowed Mr Theobald to not only form friendships with aspiring young leaders across international borders, but to assume the role of his government to present a youth perspective on current world affairs.
"This opportunity has been an incredible chance to develop my leadership skills and meet exceptional young leaders from all over the globe," he said.
"It has exposed me to the art of diplomacy and given me a voice on world affairs.
"I wish to express my gratitude for RMIT's support behind this program. Global Voices have also been an exceptional organising committee and our delegation was led and inspired by Greg Dimopoulos."
Photos courtesy of Global Voices.
Having a chat with Australian Ambassador Kim Beazley at the Australian Embassy, Washington DC.
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