The purpose of the conference is to recognize and share high-quality undergraduate research related to international and global topics.
Wednesday, April 5: Keynote Address by Ambassador Stephen Rapp: Bringing War Crimes Perpetrators to Justice
Steven J. Rapp served as U.S. ambassador-at-large for global criminal justice from 2009 to 2015 prosecuting persons charged with genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. He arranged for the United Nations Commission of Inquiry and other prosecutorial authorities to access to a cache of 55,000 photos documenting torture by the Assad regime. From 2007 to 2009, Ambassador Rapp served as prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone and led the prosecution of former Liberian President Charles Taylor. His office achieved the first convictions in history on crimes against humanity charges for sexual slavery and forced marriage and for attacks on peacekeepers and recruitment and use of child soldiers as violations of international humanitarian law. From 2001 to 2007, he led a team that achieved the first convictions in history against leaders of the mass media for the crime of direct and public incitement to commit genocide in the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. He received a BA from Harvard College and a JD from Drake University Law School.
Thursday, April 6: Fulbright Scholars Celebration and Recognition of Professor Eleanor Zeff
Friday, April 7: Global Data Hub Launch Party
including a Global Data Hub Presentation and talk by Ambassador Darci Vetter: From Iowa to the World - Economic Nationalism and Global Trade
Ambassador Darci Vetter was Chief Agricultural Negotiator for the U.S. Trade Representative and served as Deputy Under Secretary of Agriculture for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services. She was an International Trade Advisor on the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance. Prior to working in the Senate, Ms. Vetter held numerous roles at the Office of the United States Trade Representative, including Director for Agricultural Affairs and Director for Sustainable Development. Prior to that, she was Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Management at the U.S. Department of State. Ambassador Vetter received a BA from Drake University and an MPA and Certificate in Science, Technology, and Environmental Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.
Saturday, April 8: Student research panels and other presentations
Please click on the student's name to see a video of the presentation. Please click on the paper title to see a pdf of the paper.
The Status of Refugees
Historical Perspectives on Global Issues
Global Pressing Issue Grant Project: Assessing, Collaborating, and Empowering to Improve Water Quality in Rural Uganda
Professor Cassity Gutierrez, Karli Kisch, Hayley LeBlanc, Megan Lindmark and Augusta Weide
Science, Health and Environment
Ryan Wealther, Abigail Cowan, Sara Donovan, Carl Johannson, Study of Incidence and Socio-Biological Factors Associated with Low Birth Weight Babies Born at Pravara Rural Hospital, Ahmednagar District of Maharashtra, India
Lauren Blum, Kacie Deavers, Joe Herba, A Socio-Epidemiological Study of HIV Patients at a Tertiary Care Hospital in the Ahmednagar District of Rural India
Perspectives on Human Rights
Drake Simulation League
Mollie Clark, Rachel Gray, Isabelle Barrett, Ryan Wiskerchen
Closing Remarks by Kosovo Consul General Xhavit Gashi
Consul General Xhavit Gashi serves at the Consulate of the Republic of Kosovo in Des Moines, Iowa. He served as the first ever Kosovo Security Force Attaché to the United States. He retired from the military as a Brigadier General after completing almost 20 years of service. He was Senior Officer in the Kosovo Security Force (KSF), with a proven academic record and more than 10 years of experience in security sector reform.
Best Presentation Prize awarded to Megan Lindmark and Lauren Blum
April 8-9, 2016, activities included:
- crisis simulation supervised by former U.S. Ambassador Ken Yalowitz and former White House Director of Global Engagement Brett Bruen,
- dinner social featuring international appetizers,
- keynote "National Security and Women's Insecurity" by Valerie Hudson, University of Texas A&M,
- panels featuring presentations of student research on global affairs (see below),
- closing luncheon address by visiting Global Practitioner Peiqin Zhou, Nanjing University.
The 2016 Best Presentation Award was given to Haley Barbour, Drake University.
April 10-11, 2015, activities included a group simulation in U.S. foreign policy facilitated by Ambassador Joseph Mussomeli, a keynote address "Political Islam: What the West Can Learn from Its Own History" by noted scholar John Owen (bio: http://politics.virginia.edu/people/jmo4n), student panels and a closing luncheon with Iowa Representative Zachary Nunn, formerly Director of Cybersecurity Policy at the National Security Council, White House. Nunn's topic was "Inside the National Security Council." Student research panels included the following:
The 2015 Best Presentation Awards were given to Allison Smith, Beloit University, and William Heaston, Drake University.
The First Annual Nelson Institute Undergraduate Conference on Global Affairs was held on April 11-12, 2014, at Drake University. The 2014 Friday Night Keynote speaker was Todd Sechser, University of Virginia, on "Crisis Bargaining and Nuclear Blackmail: Should We Be Afraid of an Iranian Bomb?"
2014 Student Panel on Globalism, Nationalism and Identity:
2014 Student Panel on International Political Economy:
2014 Student Panel on Nation, Gender and Human Rights:
2014 Saturday Luncheon Keynote Speaker: Jerry Gallucci, Diplomat-in-Residence, Former Foreign Service Officer and UN Peacekeeper, spoke on "U.S. Policy on Russia and Ukraine."