On Friday, January 20th, the Argentine Embassy hosted a networking event for the launch of Latin American Graduate Public Policy Student Network in the US (OMNIA), organized by the Latin American and Caribbean Policy Association (LAPA) of the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University.
The OMNIA Network will be a meeting point for past, present, and future Latin Americans that are pursuing a masters degree in in this area of the United States, to promote future regional links. Likewise, it will serve as a vehicle for centers of Latin American studies at universities. In its first edition, the OMNIA Conference 2023 was attended by students from Georgetown McCourt School of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School, Columbia SIPA, Princeton SPIA, Yale
Jackson School of Global Affairs, the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy and CornellBrooks School of Public Policy.
During the Conference, the participants had the opportunity to visit the Capitol and the Inter-American Development Bank. They also participated in panel discussions on “Democracy and Government” and “Social Challenges and Opportunities” with prominent players in the field of public policies, including the Director of the Wilson Center's Latin America Program, Benjamin Gedan; the former president of the Inter-American Dialogue, Michael Shifter; the Director of the CSIS Americas Program, Ryan C. Berg, and officials from the International Republican Institute (IRI) and the National Democratic Institute (NDI). They also met with the Assistant Administrator of the Latin American and Caribbean Bureau at USAID, Marcela Escobari.
This OMNIA launch and networking event at the Embassy was attended by more than 100 students, and the following addressed the attendees: the Dean of the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown University, María Cancián; the president of the Latin American and Caribbean Policy Association (LAPA), David Guzmán Fonseca; and the Deputy Chief of Mission of the Argentine Embassy, Adrián Nador.
Dean Cancián highlighted that “At McCourt, through our faculty and student organizations like LAPA, we believe in the importance of promoting research, understanding, and recognition of all Latin Americans. OMNIA is another undisputable proof of this.” In turn, David Guzmán Fonseca stated “At OMNIA we understood the importance of working together and supporting each other. And this is partly what brings us here today: our need as Latin American students
studying in the United States to have a network that provides support and promotes working together. This is what the creation of the OMNIA Network means to us... it goes beyond holding an annual event that brings us together, today we are taking the first step in creating a platform that allows us to connect, interact, learn, discuss and supports us as Latin American students.”
Lastly, Minister Nador highlighted the excellence and tradition of the Public Policy Schools that make up the new network and pointed out that the Latin American students members of OMNIA have been trained over the years, acquired knowledge and experiences, established networks, and learned a set of interdisciplinary tools that will enable them to become agents in the implementation of public policies for development in diverse sectors of their national realities.