Imagine that you live near a smog-filled city of six million people where, despite the best pollution prevention and forecasting efforts by city officials, residents often are mistakenly told to remain indoors on clear days and advised to go outdoors when the air is polluted. Some of us likely would stay put and endure the conditions, while others would move away to a different city. But UI alumnus Marcelo Mena-Carrasco chose a different path—he joined forces with UI colleagues as well as officials of the city of Santiago, Chile, to implement a dramatically improved pollution-forecasting model for the city of Santiago.
Citizen diplomacy may well be our state’s most valuable export. For more than 50 years, Iowa has been front and center in volunteer, people-to-people diplomacy through our long tradition of Sister State relationships. Sister State exchanges bring the world to our doorstep and have helped Iowa build deep and lasting friendships throughout the world, resulting in greater cooperation and trade.
Amy Bowes, a Study Abroad adviser at the University of Iowa, was lost. It was 2005, and she had just graduated from the UI with a degree in political science. She remembered the Peace Corps building she had seen while interning in Washington, D.C., and decided to volunteer. Six months later, she was teaching high-school English in Lesotho — a country in Africa. Bowes said she now uses her experiences of feeling unsure about travel and her future to relate with students on campus today.
Two Japanese Kizuna Fellows shared their touching first-hand accounts of the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011 in a presentation Monday, August 5, at the Johnson County Crisis Center where the two are interning for the summer. In addition to their personal experiences, they discussed the food-bank system of Japan and the struggles of their home communities to return to normal life.
One local church continues to open its doors to international students arriving at the University of Iowa by offering free necessities.
Faith Baptist Church, 1251 Village Road, will host its 11th-annual International Furniture Giveaway on Aug. 17, an event Assistant Pastor Jake Mangold said is the biggest way the congregation meets students.
Four University of Iowa undergraduate students and 20 UI graduate students have received Stanley Awards for International Research to conduct research abroad or pursue learning activities in international studies that are not available on the UI campus.
Phil’s Day 2013 celebrates the many ways philanthropy and private gifts support the university and its programs. Every year, hundreds of students are able to study or conduct research abroad thanks to generous donors. In honor of Phil, check out some of their unique experiences.
Thousands of miles from Iowa, an earthquake struck China last week, but some University of Iowa students still felt the impact. On April 20, a magnitude 7.0 earthquake hit the center of Ya’an, located in the southwestern Chinese province of Sichuan, killing more than 192 people and leaving more than 11,000 injured, according to the Associated Press. On Thursday night, approximately 100 students each held a white carnation as they encircled the candles that formed a heart shape in the middle of the Kautz Plaza. They then prayed for the victims at Ya’an.
FONDAL, HAITI — The little band of American volunteers sat under a tree, panting and sweating from a taste of daily life in the poor rural villages of Haiti. The group, made up mainly of Iowa doctors, nurses and other medical professionals and students, had spent an hour and a half climbing a winding dirt road up a mountain to this remote village. On the way, they’d seen Haitians making the trek while bearing heavy loads of water, fruit, chickens, firewood and homemade charcoal.
When the volunteers finally arrived in town, scores of villagers were already lined up under the hot March sun, waiting for the rare chance to share their health concerns with a doctor. Casey Panko, a University of Iowa nurse helping lead the team, briefed her exhausted colleagues about the ailments they would treat in the small stucco building that would serve as a clinic.
The Chinese Association of Iowa recently selected Downing Thomas, dean of International Programs at the University of Iowa, as an honoree of the International Education Leadership Award. The award recognizes individuals or organizations that have an exemplary record of publication, teaching, advising, advocacy, leadership, new program development, or general service to the field that has made and will make a lasting contribution to international education.
University of Iowa alum Aaron Sinift, creator of 5 Year Plan in collaboration with Gandhi Ashram spinning and weaving collectives in India and 26 artists from 7 countries, will be speaking at the UI Thursday, February 28, 2013, at 5 p.m. in 1117 University Capitol Centre.
An increasing number of University of Iowa students are choosing to not only study abroad but also to work and volunteer overseas. The university is ranked 46th, among schools of its size, in the number of students graduating and joining the Peace Corps.
The UI recently increased its response to this demand by creating a position specifically geared toward students wanting to work, intern, or volunteer abroad. The position has been in place for 18 months, and officials have seen good results.
Much of what we know about Western African history comes from the colonial era, when European powers controlled the politics and commerce of the region.
With its exhibition “Western Africa Before the Boats,” the African American Museum of Iowa, located in Cedar Rapids, is setting out to give visitors a glimpse of life in Western Africa in an earlier era. And the University of Iowa—known for its extensive African art collection and expertise—is helping to tell the story.
In recognition of his worldwide reputation as a respected teacher and scholar of international human rights, Burns Weston, founding director of the University of Iowa Center for Human Rights (UICHR), was recently awarded the Courage of Conviction award.
The Courage of Conviction award honors an individual who has demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to the protection of human dignity and the advancement of human rights. This award recognizes the strength of character required of persons who advocate for the rights of individuals and for the common good in the face of opposition and often at significant personal cost.
Toward the end of “One Tree Three Lives” — a documentary on the life and work of Hualing Engle, the Chinese novelist and co-founder of the International Writing Program — there is a shot of her dining room table where, she reports, more than 600 writers have come to eat during her time in Iowa City.
It is a telling moment: hospitality is a recurring theme of Angie Chen’s film, which had its U.S. premiere on Sunday at the Landlocked Film Festival. And Engle’s spirit of generosity is what will be celebrated at 5 p.m. Friday in the Old Capitol Senate Chamber, when the UI’s International Programs awards her its International Impact Award for her contributions to global understanding.