YES Programs



Lebanese YES Alumnus to Become an Official Diplomat!

Headshot of Khaled

There is no doubt that YES students’ journey to success is never-ending from the moment they go on the YES program until they become alumni in their home countries.

In addition to being active members in their home communities, YES alumni persevere to accomplish their goals through education and hard work. One of these YES alumni is Lebanese alumnus Khaled Hamadeh who officially became a Lebanese diplomat after successfully passing the very challenging civil service examination.

Khaled (YES 2007-2008, Lebanon, hosted by AYUSA in Decatur, GA) has always had an interest in international relations. After going on the YES program and experiencing the responsibility of being an ambassador of his country in the U.S., Khaled knew he wanted to play a role in representing Lebanon on a larger scale.

After pursuing his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the Lebanese American University in Beirut, Khaled was selected for the Fulbright program where he pursued a master’s degree in International Affairs at Georgia Institute of Technology; Khaled was one of 13 candidates who were selected for the Fulbright program in 2013-2015!

As soon as he completed his master’s degree, Khaled came back to Lebanon and worked in several non-governmental organizations. Currently, Khaled is a Project Coordinator at an international humanitarian organization, the Norwegian Refugee Council, helping Palestinian and Syrian refugees of the conflict in Syria who are now living in the Bekaa Valley region in Lebanon.

This year, Khaled wanted to take his work one step further where implementing change globally becomes a possibility. For that, he took the difficult exam to enter the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Out of 870 Lebanese women and men who took the test, only 25 passed it and Khaled was one of them!

Khaled shares: “Because of my YES experience when I was 16, I decided that I wanted to become a diplomat. And at 26, that dream came true.”