2009

Global Warming a potential boon?

We are having the wrong public debate about global warming — and we are running out of time to get it right. It’s important to discuss carbon caps and taxes or other mitigation strategies, but a good chunk of the population views these as restrictive and burdensome. We miss a larger and more affirmative point if we only have that discussion.

International research and engagement

I had the opportunity recently to attend two events that are exemplary of the ways in which International Programs works to connect our campus and community in Iowa to the globe. The first, a lecture by Dr. Gebisa Ejeta, a native of Ethiopia and distinguished professor at Purdue University, was exemplary of the connections between human rights issues and agricultural science.

The other event—actually a full-blown conference, the Obermann Humanities Symposium (co-sponsored by International Programs)—highlighted a new breed of public scholar who champions engaged humanities research.

New UI professor was journalist in China during Tiananmen

Lisa Weaver’s third-floor office is still bare. She only began teaching journalism at the UI in August. She moved to Iowa City in June. Before that it was Pittsburgh. Yet even before that it was China, Indonesia, East Timor, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Weaver spent most of her extensive journalism career in China, where she went in 1987. Now, she’s using that experience in her class on international journalism.

Group builds bridges with UI internationals

The English Corner, a part of Bridges International, is designed to change all that. The group sponsors a range of activities — everything from a tailgate to a New York City trip to Catch Phrase game nights — in an effort to help form connections between students hailing from different countries.

“It is an opportunity for American students and international students to communicate in a casual setting to not only improve English proficiency but to build friendships,” said Stephen Wong, a third-year UI pharmacy student.

China's Growing Cage: The Legacy of Tiananmen

Whenever mentioning “1989”, people in the West instantly think about the protesting students in Tiananmen Square. In fact, although starting in Beijing and led by the students there, the democratic movement was a nation-wide event, drawing together people from all walks of life.

Twenty years on, I remember vividly every detail of that day when I organized a demonstration among the workers from my Nanjing factory in support of the movement. It was Sunday, May 28, a week before the crackdown in Beijing.

UI Students to India for Winterim

For many UI students, winter break means home, family, and a reprieve from classes. For others, the month off means visiting a foreign country, more than 1 billion new faces, and three weeks of intensive, hands-on learning.

Expanding its course offerings this year, the INdIA Winterim program provides students with the opportunity to study issues of social justice and entrepreneurship in a developing country.

Pharmacy Students: Summer in Mexico

Nine students from The University of Iowa ‘s College of Pharmacy were among 17 UI students who got to literally step into their subject matter and make a difference. Students learned how to partner with nonprofit organizations and local communities to address health care, social services, and environmental quality needs in less developed countries. After spending the semester planning service projects, the students traveled as part of a project team to Xicotepec, Mexico for a week in the spring of 2009.

National Myths

About a week ago, I attended an informal brown-bag lunch presentation by Professor Stephen Vlastos based on his research on post-war Japanese national myths.  The presentation was the first in the fall roster of events offered by IP’s Center for Asian and Pacific Studies (CAPS), led by Professor Sonia Ryang.  These presentations are valuable to me as dean since they allow me to hear about the vibrant research and teaching efforts of University of Iowa faculty (and, perhaps less surreptitiously than I like to imagine, to gauge the interest these events muster!).  I was pleased to see that th