My grandma, Youa Lee, an old Hmong woman who traveled from the mountains of Laos, through the refugee camps of Thailand, to the hot fields of California and the cold factories of Minnesota, was 93 when she died. My grandma was a refugee from America’s Secret War in Laos. A widow with nine children, she raised seven sons into men and two daughters into women. She would become the root of a tree that carries the fruit of more than 300 descendants.
The Provost's Global Forum "Refugees in the Heartland" will feature panels and discussions about refugee resettlement, rights of refugees, the long history of refugee resettlement in Iowa, international refugee crises and related management challenges, and will bring together refugee experts and refugee leaders from the Midwest and the nation.
Film producer Devon Terrill didn’t pursue filmmaking until after her graduation from the UI, but the experiences she had during her undergraduate education – including studying abroad – had a big impact on her career path.
International immigrants are attracted to the Midwest, and Iowa specifically, for its low unemployment rate and cost of living, diverse economic sectors, and educational opportunities, said Amy Weismann, associate director for the University of Iowa’s Center for Human Rights.
“Especially for refugees, people come from places with violence and economic strife where they fear authorities,” she said. “Iowa is much less anxious and a more accommodating place to live and not only survive but thrive.”
This fall, a group of adventurous students will leave the familiar surroundings of the University of Iowa for the bustling city of Mysore in South India where they will explore India's rich classical heritage and the contemporary forces that are rapidly reshaping this powerful nation today.
Iowa Literaria, the electronic journal of the Master of Fine Arts in Spanish Creative Writing program at the University of Iowa, is online as of Tuesday, Feb. 26. Created with the support of the UI’s Digital Studio for Public Humanities, it has been designed as a space to reflect on the art of creativity, to approach the complexities and challenges of creative writing, and to publish a variety of literary pieces.
The inaugural issue contains a dossier on the great Chilean poet Óscar Hahn, who just received the National Prize on Literature of Chile, the most prestigious literary award in that country. Hahn was professor of the Department of Spanish and Portuguese here at the university for more than 30 years. He is now retired.
When it comes to making a difference in the empowerment and health care of women, College of Nursing junior Brittney Ross is one highly motivated and dedicated individual.
As the first in her family to go to college, there have been times when Ross felt overwhelmed and her zeal to succeed was tested, but she has persevered in her studies, including her research on female genital mutilation, a subject she has investigated as far away as Africa.
Name: Guilherme B. Prudente
Home country: Brazil
Currently attending: University of Iowa
Major: Computer science
Career aspirations: Game/App Developer
Graduation year: 2013
While many of us took time to relax and unwind over the holiday break, Professor Joann (Jo) Eland, PhD, RN, FAAN, was scrambling to finalize international travel plans while prepping to instruct a class that provides vital hospice and palliative care overseas.
On December 29, Dr. Eland and a group of 18 students (11 from the College of Nursing) embarked on multi-day journey that took them from Iowa City, to Chicago, to Abu Dhabi and ultimately to their final destination—a hospice in Trivandrum, India, a city located in the Southern tip of the country—where Eland taught a three-week course titled “Hospice, Pain and Palliative Care.”
University of Iowa senior women's golfer Gigi DiGrazia was intrigued by an email she received last August for a class offered over winter break called “Diagnosing Diseases.”
DiGrazia, a health and human physiology major, wants to attend medical school, so this was right up her alley. The class would be worth three credits, offered over three weeks during winter break, and students would be working hands-on with doctors and physicians in diagnosing illnesses and other medical situations.
One of my referees (based at Yale) told me candidly that I should not be disappointed by a rejection, for no one he had recommended had ever been accepted. When the letter came from the College, it was in a thin envelope. My heart sank, for thin envelopes rarely contain good news. To my surprise, this one did. From the dean of visiting fellows, the letter began with the words "I am pleased to invite you...." And to my delight, the invitation was for not one, not two, but three Oxford terms -- a full academic year.
I’ve often thought that the best destinations are those that weren’t on your list. My experience as a Fulbright Senior Lecturer in the faculty of law at Sofia University certainly falls into that category. Unlike many of my Fulbright colleagues, I didn’t begin my experience with a particular country, or even region, in mind. Instead, I focused on trying to identify an award that was seeking someone with my background and skills, with a large degree of flexibility as to where that might be. Happily, this approach led to my selection as a Fulbright scholar and an incredible experience in a place I have grown quite fond of.
Ron McMullen held a phone to his ear in May 2000. The unfolding situation seemed like a plot from a Hollywood film starring the latest actions stars, but it wasn’t.
On the other line was the voice of the spokesman for George Speight, who listened to McMullen’s demands. Speight and his followers had stormed the Fijian Parliament in May and held Prime Minster Mahendra Chaudhry and most of his Cabinet hostage for 56 days, according to Radio New Zealand.In the midst of the conflict, an American journalist who had attempted to interview Speight was taken hostage.
McMullen, now a University of Iowa visiting associate professor of political science, was set on having the journalist freed.
Exploring the rich culture and natural beauty of Cusco, Peru, was just the beginning for Macz Norton when she participated in the Spanish Language and Service Learning study abroad program last summer.
This eight-week program combines coursework in Spanish language and Peruvian culture with valuable service learning. The service projects are organized by an onsite company, ProWorld-Peru, which meets with community leaders to develop projects that are both meaningful for students and fulfill a much-needed service for the local community.
UI Professor Armando Duarte has been a choreographer at the University of Iowa since 1993, but a trip back to his native Brazil in 2008 is what inspired him to research the culture of Carnival. Armando organizes the Brazil Carnival winter study abroad program.