When is the Summit?

The 2016 Summit will be April 6-10, 2016. It is hosted on the Northwestern University campus in Evanston, IL, USA just 12 miles north of downtown Chicago.

What is Engage?

Engage is a three day pre-summit exploration of Chicago for the International delegates attending GES.  During Engage, delegates have the opportunity to better understand American culture.  You gain an understanding of an American city through tourist activities and interacting with different social change nonprofit organizations in Chicago.

Who can be a delegate?

Any college-aged person with a social change project or idea is invited to apply to the Global Engagement Summit. We understand that depending on your individual situation, you may be older or younger than the average American undergraduate student. Feel free to apply regardless. If you have any questions, contact delegates@theges.org.

What type of people (students and speakers) come to GES?

Each year, GES brings people from over 40 countries, 50 universities, and 35 businesses and organizations. Our delegates are young social entrepreneurs with ideas, energy, and determination to put their projects into action.

Our speakers and facilitators are experts in various fields such as education, social entrepreneurship, global health, etc. and are qualified to offer to delegates tangible skills to advance both their project and personal development.

What types of programming does GES offer?

The Summit curriculum consists of an opening keynote address, a variety of skill-building workshops, Short Talks (TED-style talks), small group discussions and feedback sessions, mentoring sessions, cultural and social activities, and a closing keynote address. We also have social activities meant to foster lifelong connections. For more information, visit the alumni network page.

How much will it cost to be a delegate?

GES has a registration fee of $75 that covers food daily breakfast, lunch, and some dinners. Once in Chicago, GES will cover transportation to and from the airport. Delegates are housed for free in homestays with GES student staff members. Travel to and from a home country or U.S. state of residence is covered by the delegate.  All personal costs including some dinners and public transportation costs will be incurred by the delegate.

All costs for facilitators are covered by GES.

The Global Engagement Summit provides need-based financial aid.

Is there Financial Aid?

Financial aid is available and will be awarded on a case by case basis to cover some/all of the cost of the summit and travel expenses. Once delegates are accepted, they will be sent a financial aid application. However, accepted delegates are encouraged to seek funding from their own universities first.

Do I have to stay for the entire summit?

Yes. As a delegate, you must stay for the duration of the Summit. The GES curriculum is designed in such a way that it builds upon itself from day to day. The GES experience will be most valuable if you are in attendance for all aspects of the Summit. If you have an extenuating circumstance, do not be discouraged from applying. Please email delegates@theges.org well in advance for any questions.

What are accommodations like?

All delegates will be housed by GES staff or Northwestern students in a “homestay” setting. Between 1-3 delegates will be housed together in each homestay location. Accepted delegates will fill out a housing survey to ensure their specific accommodation preferences (gender accommodations, pet allergies, etc.) are met.

Please keep in mind that you will be staying with other college students and may be sleeping on an air mattress or couch. We believe that staying with students fosters relationships essential to the GES experience. However, if you are uncomfortable or unwilling to stay in a homestay, please feel free to arrange your own accommodations in Evanston, IL, USA. The cost of alternate accommodation and housing is not covered by GES.

Speakers, facilitators and organization representatives will be housed for free at an Evanston hotel.

What about Passover and Easter?

We realize the Summit sometimes falls during Passover and Easter. Delegates who attend GES are welcome to attend religious services available on campus during the Summit. However, the scheduled curriculum will continue as planned.

Can high school students attend the Summit?

Unfortunately, no. In general, we do not accept high school students. However, we have had a few exceptions over the years. If you have an overwhelming interest in attending, please contact us at delegates@theges.org.

Can I attend the Summit if I am not a delegate?

Yes, but not for the entirety of the Summit. Most of our programming is open to the public, such as our talks and keynotes. A limited number of workshop “guest passes” will become available in the weeks preceding the event. Contact content@theges.org for more info about guest passes.

What is an outcome?

An outcome is some form of support to delegate projects post summit.  Outcomes are sponsored by various organizations and companies and can range from monetary support to consulting sessions.  Delegates will apply for outcomes at the summit and the outcomes will be awarded at the closing banquet.  For more information, visit outcomes.

Who is eligible for the outcome opportunities?

All delegates are eligible for the outcome opportunities if they choose to apply.

What happens after the summit?

By taking part in the Summit, you will have access to a GES alumni community and resource network that tries to support youth-led endeavors. The GES website–in addition to other social networking tools–will provide a gateway to connect with your fellow GES attendees. For more information, contact alumni@theges.org.