officials signing papers in Kosovo

Tuesday, April 9, 2024 | 5:30 p.m. - 7 p.m.


UI faculty and students are leaving Iowa's imprint all over the globe, learning from others, sharing their own insights and understandings, and bridging the gap that sometimes exists between cultures and societies. From academic collaborations to the global adventures of individual students, international engagement yields rich and often unexpected results, not the least of which is a greater appreciation of one's own flexibility in the face of change.

On the April 9 WorldCanvass, we celebrated two outstanding University of Iowa students who have been deeply involved in international education, both on campus and off. Undergraduate student Katherine Lyu and graduate student Amira Nash, recipients of the 2023 Global Student Awards, joined us to discuss their passion for global experiences.

The program began by exploring an innovative and intense collaboration currently underway between the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and the Kosova Education Center, a Prishtina-based educational training nonprofit. This collaboration aims to create public-private partnerships to develop academic programs in higher education that meet market needs. 

Our panelists from Kosovo, the University of Iowa, and Iowa State University fleshed out the goals of this ambitious cooperative agreement, formally known as Private Sector Partnerships to Strengthen Higher Education (the Activity), which received funding in the amount of $3.9 million from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID).

This event is free and open to the public.

Listen to the program on PRX

Program Details

Part 1Private Sector Partnerships to Strengthen Higher Education
  • Russell Ganim - associate provost and dean, International Programs, University of Iowa 
  • Cassie Barnhardt - associate professor, higher education and student affairs, University of Iowa; program director for the Activity
  • Curt Youngs - Morrill professor, animal science, Iowa State University; senior agricultural technical specialist for the Activity 
  • Eli Gashi - chief of party for the Activity, Kosovo  
  • Zoie Schares - project manager for the Activity, University of Iowa  
  • Ardi Mejzini - communication manager for the Activity, Kosovo 
Part 2Global Student Awards
  • Katherine Lyu - undergraduate student, University of Iowa
  • Amira Nash - graduate student, University of Iowa

WorldCanvass is a production of International Programs. Programs are recorded as audio podcasts and are available on Apple Podcast, the Public Radio Exchange (PRX), and the WorldCanvass website.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Amy Green in advance at or 319-335-1433.