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One America - Up With People

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One America

Program: Up With People, Broomfield, CO
Contact(s): Carol Bowar, Assistant Director of Education and Community Service Programs: (303) 460-7100
Purpose: To prepare young people for global citizenship and foster multicultural understanding

Background Program Operations Outcomes


In 1968, Up With People (UWP) was incorporated as an independent, nonprofit, educational organization. The program was created with the goal of fostering leadership, global awareness and a commitment to service among young people. UWP teaches young people to become active leaders and contributors in their countries, communities, companies and families. It also builds understanding among people from different countries through an educational program that provides students with a unique global learning experience.

Program Operations

Up With People is an international learning program that provides personal and professional growth through the unique combination of international travel, performing arts and community service. Young people ages 17-25 take part in a year-long program that allows them to participate in the UWP musical show while traveling throughout two continents. Five casts are chosen, with 110-150 people per cast, to travel around the world while learning to put aside their differences and function as a whole. The UWP shows are original productions that change every three years, each designed to impart a specific theme. The theme for 1998 is "pulling together." UWP participants stay with host families in foreign countries, exchanging important aspects of the two cultures. Students must contribute to the different communities through service projects, such as volunteering at nursing homes or picking up trash. Service activities center on educating youth about various cultures through in-school programs that utilize structured lesson plans to discuss conflict resolution, team building, and multiculturalism. The students also work with the UWP staff in the daily planning and running of the musical program, learning important job skills such as budget planning, business operations and marketing.

Outcomes and Significant Accomplishments

Each UWP cast visits two continents during its tour, stopping through an average of 75-90 cities in 6-10 countries. Since 1965, more than 17,500 young men and women from 92 countries have participated in the program. UWP students have traveled to 59 countries on every continent. Over 20 million people have seen a live UWP performance since 1965, with an average of 650,000 people watching a performance each year. Each year, UWP students complete 500,000 hours of community service. Visit the Up With People Website at: www.upwithpeople.org

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