Jamaica teacher selected as teacher leader for People to People Student Ambassador Program

Beth Biddlecome, a fifth grade teacher at Jamaica Elementary School, has been choosen as a teacher leader for the People to People Student Ambassador Program.

Beth Biddlecome
Beth Biddlecome

In 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower founded the People to People Student Ambassador Program.  He believed that if ordinary people from around the world were able to communicate with each other directly, they could solve their differences and live in peace.  After meeting with several leaders from around the country, the Student Ambassador Program was founded.  Since 1963, thousands of students have had the opportunity to explore and experience all seven continents.

People to People allows teachers, community leaders, and former student ambassadors to recommend students who they feel will be a true representation of our country.  When they are selected, they are given the opportunity to travel around the world and experience different cultures in a hands-on manner.  In the past, Lake Havasu has had students participate in this program, but they have had to travel with a delegation from Las Vegas.  This year, the area director for Northwestern Arizona and Las Vegas, Patty Gillmore, has set up a delegation specifically for middle school and high school students from the Northwest region of Arizona (Kingman, Bullhead City, and Lake Havasu).  This is the first time that delegations will be made up of students from just the Northwest Arizona region.

Student delegations are led by teachers who have been nominated by their students or other teachers.  In order for teachers to become delegation leaders, they must go through a thorough screening process.  First, they must apply.  Once they have completed the application, they are invited to an interview.   Each leader nominee needs to have three letters of recommendation (one has to be from a student’s parent), then they are interviewed by delegation leaders as well as the area director.  If a nominee is accepted after the interview process, they are then subject to an extensive background check.
This is the first year that a teacher from Lake Havasu has been nominated and selected for the program.  Beth Biddlecome, from Jamaica Elementary School, was selected by Patty Gillmore to assist in leading the Classic Europe delegation.  Beth was eager to tell us about the program, and she told us, “I’m elated!  What a great opportunity.  Not only have I become part of an incredible program, but I will be able to share this wonderful experience with students.”

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