Alumni Programs Office: Strengthening Networks, Building Capacity, and Improving Communication

Since its inception in 2000, the NESA Center has sustained meaningful dialogue and substantive communication with over 4,200 alumni from every country in the Near East and South Asia region. In keeping with NESA’s core mission, the Alumni Office strives to foster opportunities for dialogue, to nurture the continuing exchange of ideas, and to strengthen ties with our diverse alumni community. The Center’s seminars are designed not only to impart and exchange knowledge, but also to lay the foundation for enduring relationships through personal and candid interaction. By definition, seminars are seedbeds for ideas. When our participants return to their homes they do so as part of the growing NESA family, continuing and deepening the relationships and the examination of ideas planted at NESA.

The Alumni Office, which is staffed by two fluent Arabic speakers, handles much more than alumni relations. They maintain constant communication with our alumni, in both Arabic and English, through a variety of channels including subject-specific letters, program updates, and in-country forums and receptions. We have a robust, password-protected alumni website that contains a wealth of information in English, Arabic, French, and Dari and provides access to the extensive NDU library online resources.

Maintaining close connections becomes increasingly important as the Center expands in scope and outreach and as our regional alumni advance in rank and become senior national security policymakers, as ambassadors, chiefs and deputy chiefs of staff, directors of intelligence, and ministers. The relationships forged at NESA develop into strategic and productive connections, reinforcing the regional cooperation that NESA promotes.

The NESA Center is working toward establishing joint alumni chapters in 13 countries that it shares with Africa Center, the Asia-Pacific Center, and the George C. Marshall Center.

In an initiative unique among the Regional Centers, the NESA Center is also reaching out to U.S. professional military education institutions (NDU, the Army, Naval, and Air War Colleges, etc.) to incorporate their alumni from our region into our alumni activities. We have an active growth plan for increasing our alumni efforts, and we envision supporting a large variety of new programs:

Alumni Initiatives

  • Substantive meetings and seminars planned in-region for alumni.
  • Sharing useful articles and educational resources like MERLN and the NDU Online Library.
  • Online moderated discussion boards.
  • Alumni receive weekly e-mails consisting of NESA Center updates, NESA Center faculty and staff travel plans and selected articles related to the region.
  • Alumni are invited to write on regional topics for distribution to other interested graduates.
  • We regularly distribute summaries of alumni responses to USG statements and publications – without attribution – to our senior USG stakeholders.
  • One of our continuing in-region programs is Sub-regional Alumni Events and Strategic Forums focused on the Levant, North Africa, The Gulf, and South Asia.
  • When NESA Center faculty or staff visit the region, we organize an event to bring our alumni together again.
  • The NESA Center recommends its outstanding alumni for other seminars around the world.
  • Alumni have regular and personal contact with the Alumni Office via phone, e-mail, and fax.

What else would you like to know?
For information about NESA Center activities, please contact our Alumni Office.
If you are from one of our participating countries, and would like to attend one of the Center’s programs, please contact the Political-Military Office or Military representative in the U.S. Embassy in your country for information on official invitations. Participation is limited to official government representatives.

Representatives of the United States Government are offered slots on a limited basis. Please contact the NESA Center Registrar for more information.