Organization of American States Department of<br />Human Development
Disaster Communications Management



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OAS Professional Development Scholarship Program

Disaster Communications Management[1]


1. Study venue: United States Telecommunications Training Institute (USTTI), 1150 Connecticut Avenue, NW, Suite 702, Washington, DC 20036, United States of America

2. Offered by: The Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) and USTTI under the auspices of the United States Telecommunications Training Institute (USTTI), Regional Training Center of the Inter-American Telecommunication Commission (CITEL).

3. Coordinator of the course: Liam Quinn, USTTI Curriculum Coordinator, Email: Phone: (202) 785-7373, Fax: (202) 785 1930

4. Modality of the course:                                     On site

5. Start and end dates of the course: October 31st to November 4th, 2016

6. Course duration:                                                 Five (5) days

7. Language of instruction:                                   English

8. Objectives: : The course is designed to address telecommunications needs for mitigating the effects of natural and manmade disasters in which normal communications are often disrupted by physical damage, system overload, weather conditions, or natural features such as terrain.

Site selection, planning and design considerations, and the purposes and uses of Emergency Operations Centers (EOCs) will be featured, along with the requirements for interfacing between EOCs and government officials, public safety operations, public and government media, emergency medical response and radio amateur networks. Participants will tour several types of ECOs, communications centers and commercial television facilities. Special focus will be on methods of tracking and exchanging critical information prior to, during and after an emergency, including use of computerized maps, data management, modeling and communications. The course will cover vulnerability assessment and telecommunications infrastructure development requirements for disaster prone regions, and operational issues such as emergency access to telephone central offices and reordering of existing radio networks.

9. Participant Learning Objectives: The ability to make choices concerning the application of disaster related communications technologies and to develop an understanding of information flow and how to integrate available and new communications technologies and services into a disaster network.

The participant will obtain information on the current and future usages of active and passive remote sensing in the frequency range of High Frequency (HF) to Optical frequencies. Also, the participant will obtain information on the availability of remote sensing data and visualization tools associated with the analysis of this data. Finally, there will be an opportunity to assess the current level of capacity building for the effective utilization of remote sensing data.

The participant will obtain information on the current and future usages of GPS application in the field of Disaster Management. Also, the participant will obtain information on issues related to maintaining a reliable interference-free GPS service.

10. Eligibility Requirements:

  • Be a citizen or permanent resident of an OAS member state[2]/ (Residents must send in a copy of their visa);
  • Participant profile: Policymakers, Engineers and Managers of all levels with at least three (3) years of experience and working on aspects related to disaster relief.
  • English proficiency. To be considered for admission, scores must be submitted from either the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the academic International English Language Testing System (IELTS). Exceptions may be made for applicants who hold a degree from a university located in a country in which English is the official language and also the language of instruction at the university. The minimum scores for admission consideration are:

1. Academic IELTS: an overall band score of 6.0 with no individual score below 5.0

2. TOEFL: 550 on paper-based or 80 on Internet-based test.

  • Submission of completed application form by the deadline set by the National Liaison Organization (ONE).[3] It is the candidate’s responsibility to ascertain the deadline set by the ONE in his or her country of residence.
  • In addition to the OAS application, applicants must also submit a formal application through the USTTI. Applications may be filed through USTTI’s web site:

Please Note: If you were awarded an OAS Professional Development Scholarship in the past twelve (12) months or if you currently hold an OAS Scholarship for Academic Studies, you are NOT eligible to apply for another Professional Development Scholarship.

11. OAS Scholarship Selection Criteria: Scholarships shall be awarded as provided for in the Manual of Procedures for Scholarships and Training Programs[4].

12. Scholarship Benefits:

  • For successful candidate: OAS/PDSP will cover round trip economy class air ticket from country of origin or residence to Washington, DC, United States of America[5] . Funds for terminal and in-transit expenses are NOT provided.
  • USTTI will provide: a) a stipend of $400.00 to offset hotel and living expenses; b) waiving the $150.00 administrative fee; c) Health insurance with international coverage for the duration of the course in Washington DC which includes emergency medical evacuation, repatriation of remains, and emergency medical meetings.


13. Responsibilities of the Scholarship Recipients:

  • Based on shared accommodations and an arrival date of Sunday, October 30th, 2016 and departure date of Saturday November 5th, 2016 the additional amount needed for this course is USD$ 477.00 as the total estimated hotel and living expenses amount to USD$877.00 and there is a USTTI stipend of USD$ 400. Please be advised that the amount correspond to:

o Hotel estimate = USD $507.00

o Living expenses = USD $370.00 (The living expenses are calculated based on US $50.00 per day (including travel days) and an additional USD $70.00 for ground transportation (to and from the airport).)

  • If single accommodations are requested, an additional amount of USD$507.00 will be required.
  • In order to become scholarship recipients, the selected candidates must confirm their acceptance of the scholarship by signing and returning to Department of Human Development and Education-DHDE-their completed “form of acceptance of the scholarship award”;
  • If after accepting the scholarship, the scholarship recipient for whatever reason cannot attend the course, he or she must immediately notify the Department of Human Development and Education of the OAS to see if there is an alternate scholarship recipient;
  • Scholarship recipients must communicate in writing to the OAS/DHDE on which dates they will be able to travel;
  • Scholarship recipients are responsible for obtaining the necessary visa(s) to enter the country of study and the corresponding transit(s). The OAS will not be responsible for any costs related to obtaining visas or transfer documentation;
  • Each scholarship recipient is responsible for arriving on time for the commencement of activities on the date established by the institution offering the course or program;

14. Certification: The participants will receive a diploma from the United States Telecommunications Training Institute (USTTI), regional Training Center of the Inter-American Telecommunication Commission (CITEL).

15. Submission of applications:

  • Fill out the application form.

  • After filling out the application form, click "Enviar/Send” at the end of page 5.

  • A copy of the application form will be automatically sent to your email address.

Any questions regarding submission of applications for this course should be sent to:

[1] The General Secretariat of the Organization of American States (“GS/OAS”) reserves the right to cancel this scholarship announcement at any time. Moreover, the OAS, GS/OAS, and its personnel are not liable for any actions taken in reliance on or otherwise based upon information in this announcement.

[3] The deadline for presentation of applications to the (ONE) differs from country to country and should therefore be confirmed with the relevant ONE in the applicant's country of origin or permanent residence.

[4] Pursuant to Article 4.2 of the Manual of Procedures for Scholarships and Training Programs, OAS scholarships shall be granted on the basis of the following criteria: the objectives and priorities established in the OAS Strategic Plan for Partnership for Development; the training priorities of the member states; the merits and overall credentials of the candidate, including his/her academic and professional background; the financial need of the candidate; and An extensive and equitable geographic distribution for the benefit of all member states that takes into account the greater needs of the smaller and relatively less developed economies.

[5] The Department of Human Development, Education and Employment will defray up to $ 1,350.00 in round trip air fares between member states

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