Encouraging Georgia companies to take advantage of a U.S. State Department program funding internships for Arab and U.S. students will be an important objective of the national conference of the AIESEC student organization to be held in Peachtree City Aug. 4-9, according to AIESEC officials.

Some 200 students from 37 colleges and universities throughout the United States are scheduled to attend the event that will be held at the Wyndham Peachtree Conference Center.

Pronounced “eye-sek,” the AIESEC organization has been providing internships for pre-screened international students for more than 50 years and has grown to include more than 80 countries and 700-plus university campuses.

Founded in 1948 in Europe, the organization has recently received a grant from the U.S. State Department to assist it in developing opportunities for Arab students in the U.S. and for American students in Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates.

Georgia-based companies, government agencies, non-government organizations and universities are encouraged to participate in the program in an effort to influence cooperation with the four Arab countries, according to Missy Shields, an exchange support official in AIESEC’s New York office.

“We are looking for internships for the students in this three-month program that was established by the State Department to break down cultural barriers,” Ms. Shields, a former president of the AIESEC chapter at the Georgia Institute of Technology, told GlobalAtlanta.

Under the terms of the grant, the participating organizations must provide a meaningful work experience and pay a $2000 administrative fee for the three-month period. The State Department will pay for all other costs.

To learn more about sponsorship opportunities for the conference or about the internship program, Ms. Shields may be reached by e-mail at missys@aiesecus.org