Sunday, October 4, 2015

Humphrey Fellow Ben Said attends Global Youth Summit

2015-16 Humphrey International Fulbright Fellow Ikram Ben Said attended the CVE conference, organized by the CVE project (a think-tank), the State Department and Search for Common Ground.

The GLOBAL YOUTH SUMMIT AGAINST VIOLENT EXTREMISM is a conference where the Young peacebuilders from all over the world are coming to New York with one goal – creating an Action Agenda that will redefine the role of youth as partners in preventing violent extremism. In one of the first gatherings of this kind, more than 60 youth-oriented leaders and organizations from approximately 45 countries are coming together to share their experiences in building resilience to violent extremism in their communities. Youth experts will draft the Summit’s Youth Action Agenda, a historic document that was articulated what young people know about violent extremism, what they decided to do in their communities to prevent it and a call to action for governments, NGOs, and policymakers to seize this moment and engage youth as partners against violent conflict and violent extremism.

Here is a video where President Barack Obama talks about the Action Agenda presented by youth.

See also the article in The Guardian about the conference (

From Ms. Ben Said: "it was a good opportunity to hear different perspectives. I joined this conference because I am very interested in joining the global conversation by presenting a paper/ an article about women’s role in countering ISIS."

MDP alum Papai Dep Country Dir for Innovations for Poverty Action in Accra, Ghana

Christine Papai (MDP '13) recently began serving as the Deputy Country Director for Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA) in Accra, Ghana. Focusing work in 18 country programs, IPA is a research and policy non-profit that discovers and promotes effective solutions to global poverty problems. In this new role, Papai will oversee several impact evaluations of development projects, supervise the operations and finance functions of the national office, contribute to IPA’s continued expansion in the country, and support the dissemination of results to local decision-makers. Prior to working with IPA, Papai was an evaluator/data manager at the Minnesota Department of Health and a manager at Twin Cities-based Feed My Starving Children. She holds master's degrees in mathematics, international development, and public health, all from the University of Minnesota, and a bachelor's of arts in mathematics from Carleton College.

Global Health Day-Submissions due Oct 12

Global Health Day - Submissions open for Poster Session and Photo Contest - Due Oct 12 
Global Health Day provides an opportunity for those engaged in global health around the University of Minnesota to come together, exchange knowledge across disciplines, and make connections. Global Health Day 2015 will take place onNovember 19 in the Mayo Auditorium. Submissions are now open for the Poster Session and Photo Contest and are due on October 12th.  Students, faculty, and staff are eligible to participate. New for 2015 are expanded categories for the Poster Session:
  • Research Posters
  • Global Health Experience Reflective Posters
  • Class Project or Global Health Topic

Friday, October 2, 2015

Applications Invited for Fall 2016 Inaugural Master of Human Rights Class

In light of the University of Minnesota Board of Regents September vote of approval to initiate a Master of Human Rights (MHR) degree at the University of Minnesota, faculty and staff in the College of Liberal Arts and Humphrey School of Public Affairs have been hard at work preparing the degree for its inaugural cohort in the 2016-2017 year.

The interdisciplinary degree is designed to provide students with the diverse substantive and methodological approaches necessary for the study and practice of human rights. Throughout the program, students will be able to draw upon and develop these theoretical and practical tools in a wide range of courses, internships, and field experiences available with leading global scholars and activists in human rights. To further develop students’ professional skills, the program also includes a wide range of concentrations in the field of human rights. Whether it is NGO management or the rights of refugees and asylum, students will be able to support their individual expertise and interests as they complete their Master of Human Rights.

The Faculty Committee for the new Master’s program was appointed by the offices of the Deans of CLA and the Humphrey School. At its first meeting, Lisa Hilbink (Associate Professor, Political Science) and James Ron (Associate Professor, Political Science and Humphrey School) were elected co-chairs of the Master’s faculty. The remaining committee members include:

Cawo Abdi, Associate Professor, Sociology
Ragui Assaad, Professor, Humphrey School
Alejandro Baer, Associate Professor, Sociology
Laura Bloomberg, Associate Dean, Humphrey School
Elizabeth Heger Boyle, Professor, Sociology
Karen Brown, Co-Director, Interdisciplinary Center for Global Change
Mary Curtin, Diplomat-in-Residence, Humphrey School
Ana Forcinito, Professor, Spanish and Portuguese Studies
Barbara Frey, Director, Human Rights Program
Greta Friedemann-Sánchez, Associate Professor, Humphrey School
Deborah Levison, Professor, Humphrey School
Samuel L. Myers Jr., Professor, Humphrey School
Sarah E. Parkinson, Assistant Professor, Humphrey School
Alex Rothman, Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs, CLA
Joachim J. Savelsberg, Professor, Sociology
Melissa M. Stone, Professor, Humphrey School

Students interested in the MHR should visit its new website and download a brochure for more information. Applications for Fall 2016 will become available in October. 

Please do not hesitate to contact the admissions office ( or the Coordinator of the Master of Human Rights, Mary Curtin, ( with any questions.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Oct 5, Professor Brian Edwards Public Lecture, After the American Century

The Institute for Global Studies and The African Studies Initiative
After the American Century:
The Ends of U.S. Culture in the Middle East
A public lecture by Professor Brian Edwards
Northwestern University
Monday, October 5 at 2:30 pm in Nolte 125

Brian T. Edwards is Crown Professor in Middle East Studies and professor of English and comparative literary studies at Northwestern University, where he is also the founding director of the Program in Middle East and North African Studies. He is the author of Morocco Bound: Disorienting America's Maghreb, from Casablanca to the Marrakech Express and a coeditor of Globalizing American Studies.

Description of the public lecture:

When Henry Luce announced in 1941 that we were living in the "American century," he believed that the international popularity of American culture made the world favorable to U.S. interests. Now, in the digital twenty-first century, the American century has been superseded, as American movies, music, video games, and television shows are received, understood, and transformed in unexpected ways. How do we make sense of this shift? Building on a decade of fieldwork in Cairo, Casablanca, and Tehran, and drawing on material from his new book, Brian Edwards maps new routes of cultural exchange that are innovative, accelerated, and full of diversions. 

Information about the workshop:

The workshop features a more intimate, seminar-style discussion of what Edwards calls logics and contexts of circulation and “jumping publics,” both of which are developed in the forthcoming book, but which engage the fields of comparative literature, postcolonial studies, transnational cultural studies, American studies, and sociocultural anthropology.  Two recent essays by Prof. Edwards will be pre-circulated as a jumping off point for a broader conversation that will engage participants’ own work and project. Please feel free to attend the seminar even if you do not have time to read the precirculated papers.

HHH 1st yr global policy students--watch for Rosenthal Fellowship announcement soon

HHH first-year global policy area students are eligible to apply for the 2016 Rosenthal Fellowship through APSIA. Information on the Humphrey School competition forthcoming.  At least one HHH student achieved a permanent position after graduation based upon this program's internship opportunity.

Please note past HHH awardees:

Ido Sivan Sevilla, MPP, internship in the Office of California Congressman Ami Bera

Syed Ghazi Ghazan Jamal, MPP, interned at the office of US Senator Sherrod Brown


Marie Kurth, MPP, internship in the State Department in the Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs, Office of Afghanistan and Pakistan Programs (INL/AP)

Cody Nelson, MPP, internship in the United States Treasury, Office of International Affairs - South/Southeast Asia


HHH 2nd year students interested in global policy area capstone

Important: The GPA/MDP capstone process for 2015-16 is starting this week.

MPP/MURP/MSTEP/MPA students: If you did not register for PA 5990 and would like to join the selection process, please contact one of the following faculty members as soon as possible:  Mary Curtin, Sherry Gray, Robert Kudrle, or David Wilsey.

Capstone selection process is starting Oct. 2nd.

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