International Accents

E.g., Saturday, October 25, 2014
E.g., Saturday, October 25, 2014

One lesson I have learned in my life is that when you grow up in a society where gunshots become music that people dance to, life becomes death, children become soldiers and murderers, peace becomes instability, and love becomes hatred; you begin to develop a passion for human rights advocacy because you want to make a difference in that society. What intrigues me about nursing and international studies is that they allow me to care and advocate for other people, especially those who are vulnerable.

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The UI Opera Studies Forum will present a pre-opera talk on Berlioz's Les Troyens on Thursday, Jan. 3, at 5:30 p.m. in the University Capitol Centre (UCC) Executive Boardroom, Room 2390. This event is free and open to the public.

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I was born in the United States, and my parents are from Vietnam. During my first year of college, some people mistook me as Chinese, but most people can guess Vietnamese from my last name. I guess I should have mentally prepared to mistaken as Chinese more because from the moment I stepped into the boarding room, a Chinese lady asked me (in Chinese, of course) to help her read her boarding ticket.

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Although more than 150 years have passed since the first bullets were fired in the U.S. Civil War, Americans retain a deep interest in the conflict, its causes, the major players, and the impact the war and our complicated history have on our national identity. WorldCanvass guests will continue the conversation on January 25 at 5 p.m., in the Senate Chamber of Old Capitol Museum, when the topic is “The Rupture of Civil War.” The program is free and open to the public.

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My name is Jonathan Simpson and I studied abroad for a summer in France. France was simply marvelous! I spent six weeks in Chambéry, which is in the heart of the Alps in southern part of the country, and three weeks performing research at the Bibliothéque Nationale de France (BNF) in Paris. I was able to travel a little as well, visiting Omaha Beach, Normandy, Lyon, Geneva, and Madrid to name a just a few. I had always dreamed of going abroad, and the older I got, the less I thought that it might be possible.

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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.

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An ocean stretches between China and the United States. But between Chinese and American University of Iowa students looms just as difficult a barrier to cross — one constructed of language and culture.

The Chinese students make up the largest international student population on campus. UI President Sally Mason traveled to Asia this summer to strengthen the relationship and recruiting efforts between the UI and China. But after the students arrive on campus, making a home in the unfamiliar setting of Iowa City presents a complex set of social challenges.

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While locals celebrated Human Rights Day in Iowa City, several took the opportunity to further discuss the future of the University of Iowa Center for Human Rights.

Members from various local advocacy organizations convened Monday to discuss the importance of universally defined human rights, on the 64th anniversary of the U.N. General Assembly’s ratification of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

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Want to study abroad in Europe next summer? Check out the Iowa International Summer Institute, which will offer UI GenEd classes in Rome, Paris, Florence, Madrid, and London in summer 2013. In this video, three past participants share their unique experiences.

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Ronald McMullen, a visiting associate professor of political science at the University of Iowa and a former U.S. ambassador to Eritrea, offers three pieces of advice to students interested in working in international politics.

“Be a good student, a good citizen, and have international experience,” he said. “Grades do matter. And a misdemeanor won’t look good to federal employers.”

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What do the University of Iowa’s 1,245 Chinese students, Whirlpool appliances from Middle Amana, Johnson County’s cornfields, Kirkwood’s STEM outreach and West Liberty’s Dual Language Programs have in common?

They represent some of Iowa’s considerable assets in the world-wide competition for growth and prosperity. Thanks to advances in communication and transportation, globalization means that Iowa is more connected to and affected by world events than ever before.

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You would think by having a waterproof, shockproof camera that your pictures would be safe. Well, not from a little girl who doesn’t read English. With the pressing of just a few buttons she managed to delete the 1,000 pictures documenting a month of my time in Nicaragua. Luckily, I found a program to retrieve photos that have been deleted from a memory card and I am thankful that, in my whole summer of traveling, that incident was the closest thing that could be considered a disaster.

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The U.S. government is making it much simpler for colleges and universities to understand why international students attend their institutions. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security is simplifying the distribution of degree and English language I-20 forms international students receive from universities following their admission.

With guidance from the program, some universities will face less confusion, but University of Iowa officials see the university as already being conscientious when admitting international students.

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The University of Iowa Students for Human Rights will gather on the Pentacrest Wednesday to protest the closing of the UI Center for Human Rights. The demonstration sparked a disagreement between supporters of the center and the Provost’s Office regarding publicity for the event.

Some of the center’s supporters contend UI administrators are suppressing students’ intellectual freedoms by intentionally finding ways to thwart publicity for the protest. However, International Programs Dean Downing Thomas maintained officials are following their usual procedures.

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Frances Barnes recalls the profound culture shock she experienced when she first arrived in Iowa three years ago.

“I had never been to the Midwest before and wasn’t prepared for how different everything was,” says the 33-year-old College of Education Rehabilitation and Counselor Education doctoral student from North Carolina. “And I mean everything—the weather, the landscape, the culture, and not seeing as many people who looked like me.”

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Lee Seedorff is the senior associate director of the University of Iowa’s International Student and Scholar Services, a school with over 3,500 international students. Jane Duo, a Chinese student at the University of Iowa, wanted to find out how an international advisor like Lee communicates with her many charges and what challenges she encounters in working with foreign students.

Lee said the University of Iowa begins talking with international students before they even arrive on campus, offering pre-arrival checklists to prepare students for what they need to know to come to America, and then continuing with orientations and special programs to help international students navigate their life in the U.S. So after all that communication experience, what does an international student advisor have to say about communicating with international students?

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University of Iowa President Sally Mason, in her recent interview with the DI editors, discussed the future or, more precisely, the elimination of the UI Center for Human Rights as we have known it.

She spoke of the university's budget difficulties and suggested that closing the center would "save some money." She also argued that the provost's plan to parcel out a couple of the center's programs to other academic units was "perfectly appropriate" and would enable the work of the center to continue "in a different capacity."

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The European Studies Group’s fourth-annual conference, “Napoleon and the World: Literature, Politics and the Arts,” will build off of the many UI projects this year on Napoleon Bonaparte for the 1812 bicentennial. The conference will be held Friday, Nov. 30, 2012, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. in 315 Phillips Hall. This event is free and open to the public and no registration is required.

The keynote address “Isaac and Alexandre: Sons and Memorialists of Napoleon’s Black Generals” will be presented by Daniel Desormeaux, associate professor of French in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures at the University of Chicago.

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The story behind Mozart’s La clemenza di tito will be examined for public audiences in the next UI lecture coordinated with the Metropolitan Opera’s Live in HD theatre transmissions. The talk will be presented by Robert Ketterer and held Wednesday, Nov. 28, at 5:30 p.m. in the University Capitol Centre, Room 2520D. This event is free and open to the public.

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The number of international students enrolled at the University of Iowa hit an all-time high this fall, and the increase from last year was more than double the national rate. There are 3,571 international students at UI, up 14 percent from the 2011-2012 academic year, in which there were 3,130 international students.

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More international students are going to college in the U.S. than ever before, and many of them are traveling from the other side of the globe to come to the corridor.

The University of Iowa offers opportunity for native Iowans, but U of I officials are tapping into a growing Chinese market full of students eager to student in the U.S. Five years ago, the University of Iowa welcomed around 400 new international undergrads; this fall that number jumped to well over 2,000.

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The University of Iowa’s international student population accounts for roughly one-third of the state’s monetary contributions by foreign students.

Although the UI’s international program is not the largest in the state, it brought in roughly $101 million to the state’s economy in the 2011-12 academic year.

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What rattles a room of University of Iowa business students munching on Korean cuisine?

The pounding bass of “Gangnam Style.”

In an effort to inspire students to become more culturally aware, the UI Tippie College of Business hosted a seminar on Tuesday to the tune of the world-famous “Gangnam Style,” written and performed by Psy.

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Stephanie Smith won’t be eligible to vote for five years, but a recent experience hosted by the University of Iowa College of Education left her eager to fill out a ballot.

“Instead of letting other people choose the person who is going to be our leader, I can have a say in it,” she says with a smile.

The seventh grader from Cedar Rapids was one of more than 300 middle-school and junior-high students attending the 16thannual International Day for Human Rights Nov. 6. This year’s event focused on the “Human Right to Political Participation.”

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Sure, it’s got a good beat and you dance to it, but Gangnam Style is more than your usual pop trifle about never getting back together or calling me, maybe.

“There’s something else going on here that explains its popularity,” says Mark Archibald, assistant director for global community engagement in the Tippie College of Business, who discussed the song’s world conquest over lunch with about 50 Tippie students Tuesday. “It’s a reminder of how many times we come across a cross-cultural context in our daily lives that we don’t understand.”

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