The University of Iowa

Dean's Message: Enjoying the familiar

October 1st, 2021
Anthony Young standing in tropical forest in Ecuador
UI medical student Anthony Young participated in an 8-week global health elective at the Cacha Medical Spanish Institute in Ecuador during the summer of 2021

Dear All,

Happy Fall!

As Iowa Citians past and present know, autumn is the most popular season in our community. Mornings and nights are cooler, leaves are starting to turn and fall, and the Hawkeyes (ranked #5 in the country as of this writing), are back on the gridiron and going strong!  Autumn also means the full return to campus. While things are not completely “normal” in the way they were before Covid, we are regaining a sense of the “familiar” which leaves us in a much better spot than we were a year ago at this time.

In International Programs, this means UI students are slowly starting to go abroad. At present, the UI has either sent, or is sending, students to South Korea, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Ecuador, among other countries. All told, roughly 40 UI students will go abroad during the fall term. While this figure does not reach our usual numbers for the first semester, the count is respectable given the uneven rebound from Covid across the globe. We also have a number of students taking advantage of virtual study abroad or internship opportunities, and this past week (September 13-16), International Programs held its fall virtual Study Abroad Fair, with student interest in global experiences remaining strong. Special thanks go to IP’s Study Abroad advising staff as well as our Communications and Constituent Relations team for distributing information, connecting with students, and highlighting the lifelong value of experiential learning beyond the U.S. As Study Abroad recalibrates, we are shifting to an advising model focusing on disciplinary and career interests rather than region or country.

fish sculptures at Hancher
The Wellspring fish sculpture installation at Hancher Auditorium

The familiar also includes visitors from other countries! In last month’s message, I mentioned the new and returning international students we were delighted to see pass through our doors. In addition to these valued members of the Hawkeye community, IP, the College of Law, and the UI Center for Human Rights will welcome a distinguished delegation from the Kenyan judiciary September 25 - October 10. In mid-October, IP, in conjunction with the Consulate of the Republic of Kosovo in Des Moines, will receive that country’s First Secretary of Training and Development. It will be a true pleasure to welcome these colleagues in person to further develop our already strong partnerships.

And finally, with respect to in-person events, I would urge you to view photos and hear the program we held in collaboration with Hancher Auditorium entitled Wellspring: The Power of Partnerships. This celebration of sculpture, music, dance, and the enduring power of culture represents the best of the Iowa City as a place where people from all over the world can grow and thrive. This event, part of this fall’s Welcoming Week festivities, illustrates the open, vibrant nature of our community. There is more and better progress to be made, but for now, we enjoy the familiar in this changed world.

 

With all best wishes,

Russ Ganim signature

Russ

Keywords 
Author