U.S. Department of State
International Visitor Leadership Program
Reflections on Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility
Phoenix, the capital of Arizona, is the fifth-largest city in the United States. The city has a metropolitan population of approximately 1.7 million residents. It is an important industrial and business leader of the Southwest, sharing a border with one of its largest international trading partners: Mexico. Geographically, Phoenix covers a large territory. Its 519 square miles (835 square kilometers) are subdivided into various suburbs and regions, each with its own distinct personality and flavor; from the elegant resort heavy town of Scottsdale, to the Arizona State University campus in Tempe, to the urban Phoenix Central Corridor, to the retirement communities of Sun City West.
Officially recognized in 1868, Phoenix is a relatively new city. People have been attracted to the valley for its favorable climate, casual lifestyle, and its excellent growth opportunities. Phoenix is situated in the Sonoran Desert, surrounded by various mountain ranges. Its natural environment is complemented by the many parks and lakes throughout the area. With over three hundred days of sunshine each year, Phoenix is an ideal year-round destination for business and lifestyle travelers alike. Winter is often referred to locally as Snowbird season because so many northerners flock to the region for the mild weather, but in the summer, temperatures can easily reach the triple digits Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).
Phoenix is a hotbed for industry, with notable legacy clusters in microelectronics, health and biosciences, advanced manufacturing, and finance. Phoenix’s diverse economy has attracted major companies, such as Honeywell, Motorola, Intel and Boeing, as well as billions of dollars in development. The region is also home to over forty nationally rated higher education institutions, including Arizona State University.
Because of its location and size, Phoenix has a very diverse and active culture. The city is strongly influenced by its Mexican heritage and the Indian reservations that cover so much of Arizona’s land mass and are heavily represented in cuisine, architecture, art, and culture. Additionally, Arizona's great outdoors includes 22 national parks and 10 national landmarks; among these are hallmark sites such as Sedona and the Grand Canyon. Cultural centers are also widespread throughout the city - Gammage Center, located on the campus of the Arizona State University, hosts a wide variety of events from opera to shows to concerts and the Heard Museum of Anthropology and Primitive Arts houses one of the finest collections of Native American artifacts in the world. The city is home to six major league sports teams and a multitude of high-profile public events. With a wide array of perspectives, activities, and resources, Phoenix undoubtedly has something to offer a multitude of visitors!
Located at a deep harbor, the city has a population of over 667,000 people living in its 47.8 square miles. Boston is a growing city, and is experiencing its third great building boom since the 1850s, with major construction and urban planning efforts evident throughout the city -- in addition to entire new neighborhoods. Within the past five years, Boston has become a “majority minority” city, with non-whites now making up 53% of its population. Currently 44% of Boston Public School Students are non-native English speakers. Boston has 23 official highly diverse neighborhoods, and is a true ‘walking city’: Nearly 13% of Boston residents walk to work, while nearly 33% regularly use the city’s extensive system of public transportation. Boston is the anchor of a substantially larger metropolitan area called Greater Boston, which as a commuting region includes parts of Rhode Island, New Hampshire, and Maine.
As the largest city in New England, Boston is the regional center for the insurance, banking, finance, and publishing industries. It is a noted hub of biotechnology, home to such globally known companies such as Genzyme and Novartis, as well as many innovative smaller firms. Boston is also renowned for its medical research facilities and state of the art hospitals. After Silicon Valley in California, Boston is the United States’ second most prominent center for venture capital and high-tech entrepreneurship, fed by graduates of the area’s many universities. The Boston-Cambridge area boasts over eighty colleges and universities, including Harvard, Northeastern, Boston University, Boston College, and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Boston also has a tradition of social innovation, and is the home of a vibrant nonprofit sector, ranging from grassroots groups to headquarters of such prominent organizations as Partners in Health, Oxfam America, City Year, and Citizen Schools.
Boston is also is a thriving center for the arts, home to the world-renowned Boston Symphony Orchestra, the American Repertory Theatre, and the Boston Ballet. The city also boasts outstanding museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts, the Institute of Contemporary Art, the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, the Museum of Science, and the New England Aquarium. Popular public facilities include many parks from the Boston Common to the Boston Harbor Islands and the first public library in the country – and one of its best. Finally, Bostonians are passionate fans of their championship sports teams. Fenway Park is the oldest major league baseball park still in use and home to the Boston Red Sox. Other favorites include the Boston Celtics basketball, the New England Patriots football, and the Boston Bruins hockey teams.
Phoenix program organized by
Global Ties Arizona