UVU Delegation Prepares for 4th Global Meeting of the
Mountain Partnership in Erzurum, Turkey
A delegation from Utah Valley University (UVU) which includes Dr. Baldomero Lago, Senior Director International Center and Multicultural Studies at UVU, Jordan Giles and Mark Petersen, UVU students and vice-Presidents of the Utah International Mountain Forum, a coalition of student clubs at UVU, have been making preparations for the 4th Global Meeting of the Mountain Partnership in Erzurum, Turkey. The summit will feature a gathering of many international governmental and nongovernmental organizations with focus on promotion of the United Nations agenda of sustainable mountain development (SMD) in order to help address, as well as bring awareness to, the many urgent issues facing mountain communities, including climate change with its impact on the environment, water and energy resources and supplies, poverty alleviation, gender, and creating stable institutions, among others. The important mission of that high-level international forum will be to adopt a four-year long strategy to promote SMD-agenda by members of the Mountain Partnership.
During the Conference Call with partners from Aspen, CO
As part of these preparations, members of the delegation have coordinated their efforts with many colleagues within UVU and within the newly formed North American Mountain Partnership Hub in order to pursue common goals and priorities during the Meeting. For that purpose, they held a conference call with Karinjo DeVore, Co-director of VERTEX, and host of the North American hub for the Mountain Partnership on Wednesday, September 11, 2013. In addition, they were able to prepare and print as a special contribution to the 4th Global Meeting of the Mountain Partnership a volume of papers written by students of UVU and high-schools from Utah, addressing a variety of topics relating to mountains and mountain peoples. Editor-in-Chief of the volume is Dr. David Connelly, Chair of the History and Political Science at UVU, a scholar on rural development and sustainability. During the Global Meeting in Erzurum, Turkey, the UVU delegation plans to make a presentation about UVU’s contribution to the regional cooperation between MP members in North America. As a part of the presentation they prepared an exhibition of 12 posters. The UVU delegation raised funds for the trip thanks to a GEL-grant provided by UVU and additional private sources in Utah valley through their own fundraising campaigns.
Mark Petersen, UVU student ( L ) and Dr. Baldomero Lago ( R )
discuss details of the trip to Turkey.
With the continuing conflict in Syria, the UVU delegation experienced some challenges before getting approval for the trip from UVU officials due to a warning issued by the State Department for U.S. citizens to avoid trips to the south-eastern part of Turkey. Now, after resolving all issues with travel authorization and making so many efforts in order to go to Erzurum, Turkey, the UVU delegation is very eager to contribute to the Global Meeting agenda and adopt a contemporary strategy for MP member’s action during 2014-2017.
Brendon Carpenter, UVU student, member of UIMF