The U.S Embassy in Lebanon is pleased to announce the International Writing Program titled “Between the Lines: Peace and the Writing Experience”, sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. State Department.
BTL: Peace and the Writing Experience will bring together 40 international and 10 U.S.-based students, ages 15-18, for two weeks of intensive BTL summer programming hosted online by the International Writing Program (IWP) and the University of Iowa (UI). All programming is conducted in English and includes creative writing workshops, world literature seminars, literary readings and Q&As with visiting authors, youth and mentor conversation sessions, social opportunities for cultural exchange, as well as group and individual writing assignments outside of class. The virtual program is free of cost for all selected participants.
This year’s version of Between the Lines (BTL) will bring together participants from Afghanistan, Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Georgia, India, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Lebanon, Mongolia, Morocco, Pakistan, Poland, Sri Lanka, the Russian Federation, Tajikistan, Tunisia, UAE, and Ukraine.
Candidates must be between the ages of 15 and 18 as of July 10, 2021, proficient in English (reading, writing, and speaking) and able to participate effectively in online intercultural exchange.
All participants must have the ability to read, write, and converse in English. During the two-week program, students will take a writing-focused literature seminar—in English—with their American and international counterparts. They will also participate in a writing workshop with BTL faculty. Active discussion is an essential element of instruction.
All program activities will be in English and will include synchronized writing workshops, world literature seminars, special literary events, and social opportunities for cultural exchange, as well as group and individual writing assignments outside of class. Upon the completion of the program, each participant will receive a certificate (PDF) and IWP will digitally publish the students’ writing as an anthology. BTL: Peace and the Writing Experience 2021 alumni may also be eligible to apply for BTL follow-on microgrants. These funds will support new work that promotes creative writing and literature, youth leadership skills, professional development, community engagement, and community transformation through collaborative literary projects.
The application package includes:
- Completed application
- Original creative prose and/or poetry in English (6-8 pages). Book reports and other academic writing will not be accepted. You may submit one piece or several pieces of creative work to make the 6-8-page requirement. (Maximum file size is 20MB)
- Prompt #1: Personal statement about how your identity influences you as a creative writer and reader. (3 pages maximum; maximum file size is 20 MB)
Please include your personal response to the following:
In our daily lives, we navigate many different roles—student, sibling, daughter, son, peer. We negotiate family, friends, religious groups, as well as class, gender, race, country, and so many other groups, adjusting the way we speak or behave to fit the demands of each encounter. As we move through the day, we work through how and why we occupy each particular role. What do you consider to be the strongest, most central aspects of your identity? What does it mean to you to be a member of (or seen as a member of) a particular group? In what way does your identity influence you as a creative writer and reader?
- Prompt #2: Describe a time when you had to engage with a new situation, person, or idea that initially felt uncomfortable or strange (400 words maximum; maximum file size is 20MB).
Please respond to the following:
Describe a time in your past when you had to engage with a new situation, person, or idea that initially felt uncomfortable or strange. How did you proceed? If you had the chance, what would you do the same, and what would you do differently?
- Statement of purpose describing why creative writing is important in your life, and what you hope to learn through our BTL program. (250 words maximum; maximum file size is 20MB).
Please note: The following formatting standards are required for all submitted documents. If not followed, applications may not be considered. Any evidence of plagiarism, Handwritten application or incomplete submissions will not be considered.
Format: Typed (Microsoft Word document preferred but not required)
Font type: Times New Roman
Font size: 12 point
Margins: 1 inch on all sides
Header: Include your name, name of piece (creative work, Prompt #1, Prompt #2, Statement of Purpose)
Footer: Include page numbers
Citations: If using other people’s words/content, always give them credit
Please send an application package in one email with a subject line “Student 2021 Between the Lines 2021 – [ Your Last Name].” to BeirutPD@state.gov, and complete participant information and include it in the email:
- Nominee’s full name (as it appears on his/her passport);
- City and country of birth (as it appears on his/her passport);
- Nominee’s gender (as it appears on his/her passport);
- City of residency;
- Country of residency;
- Country of citizenship;
- Nominee’s date of birth;
- Nominee’s email address.
Submission deadline for applications: March 11, 2021.
Program dates: July 10 – July 24, 2021 (online).
Frequently asked questions – https://iwp.uiowa.edu/programs/between-the-lines/faq-international