International Fellows Program
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Sponsorship Information

| Sponsor's Roles | Hints & Tips | Country Information | Customs Considerations | Considerations in Conversation | Recognition Program
| Community Activities | Department of Defense Field Studies Program (USFSP) | Legal Status of International Fellows | Terminology


a.The International Fellows Program (IFP) adds another dimension to the U.S. Army War College which significantly broadens the academic environment for both students and faculty. The association with senior international officers destined for high level leadership positions in their respective armies can do much to improve the mutual understanding of national security problems, operations, and preparedness.

b. There are 1315 officers representing 117 nations that have graduated from the U.S. Army War College (USAWC) program at Carlisle Barracks since 1978. These officers represent the best of their countries' armed forces and many will attain the highest positions in their armed forces and play important roles in their governments. The USAWC has the opportunity to positively influence many of the world's future military leaders. Consequently, the USAWC has an international responsibility to fulfill by ensuring that the Fellow receives a constructive and realistic impression of the United States. To help ensure this responsibility is met, a minimum of two (2) Sponsors are designated by the International Fellows Office, to assist the International Fellow and their family members throughout the course of a year.

c.The International Fellow's Sponsorship program consists of a team of Sponsors. Each IF will have a total of three (3) Sponsors. Two Sponsors will be assigned by the International Fellows Office. Sponsors can be combinations of USAWC or Carlisle Barracks Staff, Faculty, Active military, Retired military, Civilians, or members of the local community.

In addition to these Sponsors, a fellow classmate will volunteer to be a Seminar Sponsor. Seminar Sponsors assist the IF in adjusting to the requirements and schedules of the U.S. Army War College’s classroom. This team of Sponsors, in conjunction with the IF Office, are responsible for the logistical and administrative arrangements necessary to make the Fellow's year in the United States professionally and personally rewarding.

If you would like to be a sponsor, you may use our online form or complete the Sponsor Application and deliver it to the IF Office either by mail, fax or email. To ensure the receipt of your application, please use the information below:

Mail To:
International Fellows Program
US Army War College
122 Forbes Ave
Carlisle, PA 17013-5329


(717) 245-4617

d.The Fellows come to Carlisle Barracks with great aspirations. For about one-half of them, this will be their first trip to the United States; others will have already attended one or more U.S. service schools. Many of them have also attended a previous foreign staff college course. Sponsors are critical to the success of the International Fellows Program.

Sponsor's Roles

International Fellows Sponsor
Sponsor's primary role is to assist the Fellow and their family members during their year-long stay at Carlisle Barracks. IF Sponsors will work as a team and in conjunction with the IF Office with any administrative, logistical challenges while helping our IF Families to understand American Cultures and become integrated into the Carlisle area. It is our hope that through the Sponsorship Program, IF’s will have the opportunity to see a broader spectrum of American life by participating in social and cultural activities.

Seminar Sponsor
The Seminar Sponsor is appointed to assist the Fellow in his daily academic responsibilities, requirements and studies.
The roles defined and the duties of the Sponsors often overlap. Sponsors are not responsible for the academic success of IF Students.

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Hints & Tips

Here are some hints and tips to better assist you in becoming a great sponsor. These are not requirements nor are they all inclusive.

Write your Fellow an early letter to introduce yourself. Tell your IF and Family members you will meet them when they arrive and that you will help them get settled.

Help assure that your Fellow's arrival is a pleasant experience by:

  • Offering to meet your IF and their Family members when they arrive at the Airport.
  • Learn the proper pronunciation of the names of your Fellow and their Family members. .
  • Assist in inprocessing your IF and their Family members.
  • Assist them in becoming acquainted with post facilities and activities.
  • Let them know you are there to help during their stay in Carlisle.

Acquaint your Fellow and their family with our customs and way of life. They want to make friends and learn as much as possible.

  • Assist in buying or leasing a car, obtaining insurance, Pennsylvania license plates, and Pennsylvania Driver's License (if necessary) . (Please consult the IF Office before proceeding with these.)
  • If possible, attend the functions held during the year for Sponsors by the Army War College. You will be notified in advance of these activities.
  • Show your interest by demonstrating some knowledge of the Fellow and their country.

You should be knowledgeable of:

  • Routine and Emergency Sick Call and Dental Procedures.
  • Letort View Community Center rules and facilities. (Alcohol cannot be brought to the Tiki Bar.)
  • Bus and taxi service.
  • Post recreational facilities.
  • Banking, car registration, etc.
  • Shopping areas.
  • House and car rental procedures.
  • PX and Commissary procedures.
  • Child Development Center and Youth Services
  • School, pre-kindergarten and local college registration.
  • Army Community Services.
  • Obtaining services for home and car repairs.
  • Procedures for securing utilities to include telephone, trash pickup and recycling policies.

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Country Information

Some knowledge of the native land of your Fellow is important. The knowledge will provide an easy conversation basis and will impress the Fellow that you have taken the time and effort to learn about his country. You will find it most useful, for example, to become familiar with:

Location and size of country, particularly in relation to other nations:

  • Capital and major cities
  • Form of government
  • Main products
  • Ethnic characteristics
  • Religion
  • History
  • Political situation
  • Dietary customs

You should know the same facts about your own country, state and local community, so these can be shared with the Fellow and Family members. You will often find that they have done their homework.

Culturegrams on your Fellow's country are provided by the IFP Office, upon request. Other materials are readily available in the USAWC library. Another good resource is the CIA World Factbook.

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Customs Considerations

Most Fellows (there are exceptions) do not voluntarily discuss their private lives as openly as Americans. They are often more formal in their relationships with each other. In many countries even people who have been acquainted for years still address each other as "Mr." or "Mrs." This reflects custom, not anti-social attitudes.

People from various parts of the world sometimes have a different "comfort distance." That is, some tend to stand much closer to each other when they converse than we do. If we would move back when they stand close to us, they wonder whether we are being cold and distant. For others, the "comfort distance" is even greater than ours.

Dinner to many Fellows means an evening meal (and to some very late) and not, as we sometimes use it, a meal in the middle of the day. Be sure that if you invite him to "dinner," you inform him of the time of day you want them to arrive. Punctuality is not as important in many societies as it is in the United States; therefore, do not be discouraged or offended if a Fellow arrives 15-30 minutes later than the prescribed time.

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Considerations in Conversation

The Fellows' capabilities with English will vary considerably from one individual to the next. One of the most difficult but important things to remember when there is a language problem is to speak clearly at a moderate pace and in a normal tone. Many people instinctively tend to raise their voices in the effort to conquer a language problem. This is something to be aware of..

Sponsors need to have good diplomatic relations on all levels that requires tact, patience, and understanding.

IF’s should know that your attitudes and expressions of opinion may not be the same as all Americans, but that they are your own...

Sponsors are NOT sales agents for the United States.

Rest assured that our visitors are probably informed, at least in some manner, about our national and local problems., therefore you do not need to avoid discussing them. You can explain many events and customs in terms of our cultural background and history, but it is not necessary to attempt to justify all that happens in the United States.

The opinions and reactions of your Fellow may not coincide with your own. This is where mutual understanding and respect for each other are a must.

While our form of government is cherished by us, we have to acknowledge, it may not be most suitable for our visitors' homelands.
You will also be dealing with the fact that while the material accomplishments of the United States are well known, our cultural and social values are equally or more significant and often not as well known.

There is nothing wrong with relaxing and reflecting if there is a lull in the conversation. Silence is a universal language that can convey respect and understanding . In some societies pauses in conversation, even long ones, are usual.

Conversation starters:

  • National dishes
  • Festivals
  • Sports
  • Future Plans of Visitor
  • Newspaper Items
  • Role of Women/Men
  • Educational Systems
  • Family Life
  • Travel in the United States or your Fellow's country

You will foster respect and learn a great deal by encouraging your Fellow and their Family members to talk about themselves, their country and ideas.

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Community Activities

Some of the sports and activities that we take for granted may prove quite new and interesting to our visitors. The following local attractions are also possible new experiences for them:

Public Libraries , Special Discussion Groups, Supermarkets, Adult Education Classes, Drive-in Banks, Shopping Centers, Drive-in Movies, Museums, Drive-in Restaurants, Sports Places, P.T.A. Meetings, Historical Sites, Flea Markets, and Farmers Markets.

A steady flow of conversation in English may tire your guests. Allow them some silent intervals for observing, absorbing and resting. It is helpful to reserve time after touring to review what you have seen and answer any questions that remain, or urge your guests to tell you of similar activities in their country.

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Department of Defense Field Studies Program (USFSP)

This program is an important aspect of the International Fellows' Program. It seeks to provide an accurate picture of the United States. As a Sponsor you are a key to its effectiveness. The DOD Field Studies Program covers the broad spectrum of life in the United States. The underlying goal is to present a true picture of the United States. Your role in assisting the Fellow to achieve a balanced understanding of the United States and American Culture is one which can have a lasting impression and impact. This is not an exercise in salesmanship; it is one of just being yourself. We are the United States in the eyes of the Fellow and their Family members.

An implied goal of the DOD Field Studies Program is also for us to gain knowledge about our international guests and their countries and cultures. The Fellows desire to present a true picture of themselves as well. It is through our mutual associations that all gain a clearer understanding of the interrelated, multicultural heritage of today's world.

DODFSP Categories

  • Human Rights
  • Diversity and American Life
  • U.S. Government Institutions
  • Political Processes
  • The Judicial System
  • The Free Market System
  • Education
  • Health and Human Services
  • Media
  • International Peace and Security
  • Law of War

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Legal Status of the International Fellows

The Fellows and their Families are subject to federal, state and local laws; and to Army, post, and school regulations, but not the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ). They are afforded the same basic privileges as U.S. officers and dependents; e.g., exchange, commissary, etc. However, there are some differences, and questions should be referred to the IFP Director. For instance, the provision of medical support is a complicated issue. Be sure to confer with the IFP Office prior to making recommendations about routine medical or dental care. The IFP Director will provide individual assistance in this vital area.

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Here is a list of some helpful terminology that you may encounter during your Sponsorship experience.

The Fellows fall into one of two basic categories of Foreign Military Trainees:

  1. International Military Education and Training Program (IMET): This program was established by legislation effective FY76. It provides for military assistance and training under the authority of the Foreign Assistance Act, as amended, for which the United States receives no dollar reimbursement. This is essentially an educational grant program.
  2. Foreign Military Sales (FMS): This program provides for cash sales of articles and services, to include training. An increasing number of Fellows are receiving USAWC training under this program.

Invitational Travel Order (ITO): This is the authorization for the Fellow to travel for the purpose of training under an approved and funded program. ITOs are rather complex and are different for each country. The IFP Office staff is familiar with the ITOs and will be happy to explain any aspect of the ITO with Sponsors.

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