Ambassador Dell Remarks at the Signing Ceremony of Transformational Leadership Program
as Delivered, July 20, 2012
Mr. Prime Minister, I want to thank you for your leadership and your vision, in agreeing to join with us in this partnership, which we call the Program for Transformational Leadership in Kosovo. The purpose of this agreement we signed today is indeed to strengthen educational ties between American institutions of higher education and Kosovo. But the goal is something different – the goal is to help train a generation of future leaders of Kosovo. With these funds today, which as the Prime Minister said, will amount to approximately 20 million Euros, we hope to be able to educate between 500 and 800 young Kosovars for at least a year or two years each, at American institutions of higher education.
During the time of my service here in Kosovo, one of the striking characteristics is what a difference young Kosovars are making within their institutions of government, within the private sector throughout the country, when they’ve been educated in America and had the experience of higher education in the United States. They do come back transformed. And that’s what we would like to try and do with these funds on a systemic basis. To train an entire generation of potential leaders at American institutions of higher education. The number could be as many as 800, it really depends on how much cooperation and additional funding is provided by the American institutions themselves. And there is hope that we will in fact get to those higher numbers.
I believe that if this is successful, this is going to have a genuinely transformational effect on Kosovo, for generations to come. I think it will remain as a lasting legacy of the cooperation between the Government of the United States and the Government of Kosovo. And so Prime Minister I want to thank you; I want to thank you again for the vision and your commitment to seeing this kind of leadership transformation take place in your country, and your willingness to work with us in partnership.
Thank you very much.