World Affairs Council Upstate

Maintaining an Active Voice in World Affairs

Promoting Global Identity in the Upstate.

Sustaining International Engagement in our Region.
Fostering a broad perspective in our increasingly interdependent world.

Join Us and Get Involved in Leading Discussions on Global Issues

At World Affairs Council Upstate, we are participants in shaping a global tomorrow. As a member of World Affairs Councils of America, and the 2023 World Affairs Council of the Year, WAC Upstate invites you to broaden your understanding of critical world issues, to network with international business leaders, innovators, academic researchers and experts and to participate in new opportunities for growth.
Global Upstate Conference on International Business & World Affairs
Coming Soon...

Form new Partnerships and Enhance Existing Collaborations

Dedicated to fostering a deep understanding of global affairs and cultures, and supported by individuals and businesses, the World Affairs Council Upstate helps globally-minded South Carolinians engage directly with each other and with topic experts, elected officials, civic leaders, and professionals from around the world. We partner with and promote other organizations and their effective implementation of impactful community initiatives.

About WACA

A National Network of Nonpartisan Organizations

The World Affairs Councils of America (WACA) supports, strengthens, and represents a national network of more than 90 apolitical, nonpartisan organizations working to deepen their communities’ global perspective through speaker programs, discussion groups, and educational experiences. WACA’s signature national programming includes an annual conference in Washington, DC, the World Quest academic competition for high school students, and the Engage America speaker series. Learn more at

Access our Online Speaker Series

View on Our Youtube Channel

If you could not attend, or you just want to view it again to refresh yourself on points that were discussed, you are in luck. We have posted PDF files of the slides, if any were used, in the presentation and a YouTube video recording of the presentations.

World Affairs Councils of America

Great Decisions, Travel the World, and World in Transition.

Every year, the nation-wide network of World Affairs Councils collectively conducts more than 1200 programs in communities and cities across the nation. Each council sets its own calendar and programs. The WACA offers a number of programs every year, including our annual National Conference, national program series, Leadership Missions, and special programs. It also acts as a distribution center for five national flagship programs: Academic World Quest, It’s Your World!

Each year, WACA negotiates subscription discounts with various publications for the Council network. This benefit is unique to WACA and serves as a reminder of the value of the national network. While the list of the confirmed discounts will continue to grow, we can announce today special discounts from:

  • Foreign Affairs – Click here to get 30% a subscription for Foreign Affairs Plus


  • World Politics Review – Click here to get full individual access for just $1 for the first three months, then only $48.50 for the first full year after that–50% off WPR’s standard rate.


  • Project Syndicate – Click here to receive 30% off a Project Syndicate Digital or Project Syndicate Digital Plus subscription when using the code WACA2024.
Council Network Calendar
Find events from a national network of more than 90 apolitical organizations working to strengthen their communities’ global perspective through speaker programs, discussion groups, and educational experiences.
WACA Weekly Newsletter

Sign up to be the first to hear about upcoming events at member councils across the country, WACA office hours and roundtables for council-to-council development, member news and job opportunities, and more – all to help you promote nonpartisan global conversations and events from wherever you are.

Travel the World with WACA

Many of our WACA affiliates offer travel programs to cooperating councils, just another benefit of a WACU membership. The trips offer all the highlights of touring, as well as access to political leaders and local experts for behind the scenes briefings not available to most tourists. Many WACA tours feature Council leaders who are experts in their fields of diplomacy, journalism or academia to create added-value experiences. And, perhaps most importantly, travelers become Citizen Diplomats with an opportunity to ‘meet the people’ to foster the dynamic exchange of international cultures and ideas.

Please click for details about the World Affairs Council of Charlotte and the World Affairs Council of Philadelphia upcoming travel opportunities.

Upcoming Events

Learn Global, Network Local

Check back soon for upcoming events

WACU Steering Committee

Meet the team of educators and business leaders that are organizing & steering the efforts of the World Affairs Council Upstate.

Brianna Woodsby

Director of Compliance & International Trade, AFL

Heidi Wenninger

Global Marketing Director, BW Flexible Systems

Kyle Anderson, PhD

VP of Strategic Programming, Academic Programs International

Tracie Frese

Executive Director, Upstate International and World Affairs Council Upstate

Elizabeth Feather

Director of Research and Strategic Initiatives, Upstate SC Alliance

Cleve Fraser

Professor of Politics & International Affairs, Furman University

Aviva Freudmann

Retired Business/Economics Journalist

Nisha Godbole

Feature Team Lead, BMW Manufacturing Co.

Andrew Pyle

Associate Professor of Communication & Interim Director, Clemson University Honors College

José A. Sagarnaga Castill

Clinical Assistant Professor & General Management Area Coordinator Department of Management, Clemson University

Jonathan Valadez

Community Action Coordinator, Hispanic Alliance

Blake Whitaker

Senior Vice President/Office Leader, Pinnacle Financial Partners

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