UI Welcomes Iraqi Students

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From the September 2010 Newsletter

By Katelyn McBride

The number of international students on campus this fall is at a record high thanks to IP’s recruitment efforts. Around 800 new international students are enrolled at the UI, making the total international student population roughly 2,800. That’s almost 9 percent of all students on campus.

Scott King, director of the International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS), emphasized the importance of diversity on campus that these students bring. He said it prepares domestic students for the future by exposing them to people of different backgrounds.

“Although the state of Iowa doesn’t match the U.S. in demographics, the university is getting closer,” King said. “That’s why we recruit certain groups.”

A small number of the new international students at the UI come from Iraq. In January 2009, King gathered with U.S. and Iraqi educators in Baghdad to discuss a new project called the Iraqi Education Initiative. The UI is one of the leading institutions in the nation on this project, bringing at least five Iraqi students to the university this fall with the possibility of more on their way.

King said the program will help these student leaders inspire positive changes in their country upon their return.

“The University of Iowa has positioned itself—and the State of Iowa—to help transform and stabilize Iraq through one of our major strengths: our excellent system of higher education,” King said.

To read more about the Iraqi Education Initiative, see Scott King’s posting in the NAFSA blog.

To learn more about two of the UI Iraqi students, see a recent Daily Iowan article.

This article appeared in the September 2010
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