Student prepares for epic trip to D.C. World Affairs Council Conference

Nothing delights us at PPCC more than fan letters about our students.

Here’s a recent one:

“My husband and I attended a World Affairs Council dinner meeting last evening in the Springs. I thought you might want to know that one of your students, Clark Jones, attended the meeting and made a short presentation. He had recently received a scholarship allowing him to attend the national World Affairs Council Conference in D. C. (He was one of 25 college students receiving a scholarship to attend.) He was extremely professional in his appearance and his presentation and very appreciative of the opportunity. Just thought you might want to be aware that PPCC was so well represented last evening.”

Here’s an excerpt from Clark’s talk, reprinted with permission of Clark and the Colorado Springs World Affairs Council:

"Genius knows no race or creed, but is found anywhere that there are human beings." These words from Senator George Mitchell, the "most respected member of the Senate", were the perfect opening to this year's World Affairs Council conference. Senator Mitchell's words would continue to bounce around in my head as the conference continued. Before the first session of the conference, I had the opportunity to meet some of my fellow scholarship recipients. The World Affairs Councils of America are helping to produce some incredibly driven and gifted young people. The accomplishments of some of these young adults would seem impressive for an individual twice their age, let alone someone in their early twenties. The passion they had was palpable, their genius apparent. I had a handful of new associates and friends before Senator Mitchell even took to the stage. Senator Mitchell advocated for more knowledge and more education in America, and a heavier emphasis on foreign area studies and international relations. Maybe if education were made a little more prominent, Senator Mitchell wouldn't have had to sign a photo of Henry Kissinger for a confused admirer!

Being able to attend this year's World Affairs Council Conference served a unique purpose for me as a student and as a man. As a student, the conference was an absolute trove of information and experience. Hearing from experts and leaders in their respective fields speaking on subjects from trade and foreign policy to terrorism and the economy, the conference was a proverbial baptism by fire. In the span of three days, I heard from Senators, Diplomats, Ambassadors, and CEOs. I participated in a Think Tank where we talked about the possible scenarios our country and world may be facing over the next twenty years. Carmen Iezzi Mezzera gave me professional advice on the best ways to achieve my goals. I had lunch with Peter Rondorf, the Minister for Economic Affairs for Germany. I was able to attend a reception at the Sultan Qaboos Cultural Center, hosted by Ambassador Al-Mughairy. It is safe to say that I would be pressed to find all of the experiences and opportunities the conference provided within my hometown.

Read the rest of his talk.