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UVU Delegation Contributes To UN Agenda On Sustainable Mountain Development

18 September 2013 No Comment

September 18, 2013

For Immediate Release

University Marketing & Communications: Whitney Wilkinson

Written by: Heather Wrigley

A delegation from Utah Valley University will participate in the Fourth Global Meeting of the Mountain Partnership at Erzurum, Turkey, from Sept. 17-20, 2013. The Mountain Partnership, headquartered under the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization, is a coordinator of the U.N.’s agenda on sustainable mountain development (SMD).

Baldomero Lago, senior director of UVU’s International Center & Multicultural Activities, and two UVU students, Jordan Giles and Mark Petersen, will attend the conference as representatives of UVU’s Utah International Mountain Forum, a coalition of several on-campus clubs that sponsor events that raise awareness of mountain sustainability topics, bring the public into contact with international guests and foreign dignitaries or bring communities together to recognize their shared mountainous heritage. The UIMF is well-known at F.A.O.-U.N. for its initiatives.

”This event is truly a great example of engaged teaching and learning by UVU students locally and globally,” said David Connelly, chair of the History & Political Science Department at UVU. “We are confident that the delegation from UVU, and the students in particular, will be very active in contributing to the final document of the global meeting, and it will bring more recognition from the international community to both UVU and our students.”

The forum in Turkey will adopt a 2014-2017 Mountain Partnership Strategy and Governance document and discuss its implementation. Other important agenda items include selecting Mountain Partnership Steering Committee members and following up on 2012’s Rio+20 Conference process and the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

Since joining MP in 2006, UVU has actively contributed to the SMD agenda.

“UVU and our partners from Kyrgyzstan, Colorado, Wyoming and many other areas co-hosted three International Women of the Mountain conferences in Orem, UT, and Puno, Peru,” said Rusty Butler, associate vice-president of International Affairs & Diplomacy at UVU. “We were able to transform them in one of the major gatherings among mountain communities in North America and to globally promote gender as a part of the SMD-agenda. This will be one of the initiatives reported at the meeting in Turkey.”

In preparation for the conference in Turkey, the UIMF hosted three workshops encouraging high school students in Utah to write essays on the U.N.’s SMD initiatives. The best papers, along with several papers written by UVU students, were compiled into one volume and taken to the forum.

The delegates also prepared several posters to be exhibited at the forum describing UVU’s work to promote SMD in the Rocky Mountains and throughout the world with help from its partners in the United States, Central Asia and Latin America.

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