Speaking at American University and the US Naval Academy
March 28, 2013 § Leave a comment
Last week, I had the opportunity to deliver two speeches about Bahrain at prestigious American institutions of higher learning – the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis and American University. Speaking directly to American college students is always rewarding and I am always impressed at how sophisticated the questions are.
My speech at American University focused primarily on women’s empowerment and opportunity in Bahrain – one of my favorite topics to discuss. Many Americans have a monolithic picture of what opportunities women have across the Middle East. In Bahrain, women were first able to vote in municipal elections in 1934, and today serve as government ministers, ambassadors, CEOs, and in virtually every profession available to men. Women in Bahrain also receive equal pay for equal work and have full access to all employment opportunities. This has been made possible by the commitment of His Majesty the King to investing in the types of education and jobs programs that provide skills critical to success.
At the U.S. Naval Academy, I reflected on the deep military partnership our countries have shared over the past 65 years. Bahrain has always been proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with our American partners and provide a welcoming home for Naval personnel in the Arabian Gulf. The stability of this military relationship is particularly important at a time when we face a number of emerging threats to our collective security.
I have a number of upcoming speaking events with college students both in Washington and around the country and look forward to sharing Bahrain’s story with them.