In September 2017, 329 participants from 49 countries convened in Málaga, Spain for an extraordinary global conference on the Future of Work, featuring a stellar lineup of speakers and thought leaders on this subject of vital importance in every region of the world. The panel discussions, presentations and countless interactions in Málaga stimulated provocative exchanges of ideas and a call to action supported by more than 15 concrete projects with a real-world impact that will be implemented by Eisenhower Fellows after their return home to their countries.

Eisenhower Fellowships also introduced 32 Youth Leaders from 20 countries, the inaugural cohort of the Eisenhower Fellowships Youth Leaders Network, and a dynamic new dimension of the EF global family. 28 youth leaders from 18 countries actively participated in the conference, providing a vibrant and enthusiastic component to all the sessions. Four leaders from the Philippines and Rwanda were unable to secure visas, but were recognized during the conference and remain part of the overall 2017 youth leadership network.

Five youth leaders provided powerful and dynamic perspectives on the future of work during a youth focused plenary panel. Their strong and eloquent opinions allowed the audience a first-hand insight into the challenges faced globally by the millennial generation.

As part of the youth leadership initiative, youth leaders were also matched with EF Fellow mentors in their field before the conference began. They were able to connect during a designated session at the conference, allowing them to begin their professional relationship and plan out expectations and project proposals for the coming year. We are following the progress of the youth leaders, watching their projects take shape and sharing their journey with the global network.

This group surpassed all expectations, and as a new initiative, the 2017 youth leaders will have a significant impact on future EF youth groups, providing feedback and suggestions and allowing us to shape a network of motivated and committed youth leaders.

In addition to the impressive number of guests that gathered in Málaga from around the world, the event was followed by more than another 600 participants on livestream and generated more than 30,000 Twitter impressions, trending #1 on Twitter in Málaga. Engagement with the EF Facebook page was up by 375% and the conference was widely covered by Spanish local and national media.

Co-sponsored by our wonderful Fellows from Spain and Jordan and marked by wonderful social events as well as fascinating local site visits in a beautiful setting by the Mediterranean Sea, the event marked the largest EF gathering outside the United States in our 64-year history, leaving Fellows energized and exhilarated.

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