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  • Writer's pictureLeila Assadi

Flipping the Script: Global Ties Iowa China Exchange

For those familiar with our organization, you know that we host international leaders to support and sustain citizen diplomacy initiatives in eastern Iowa. This summer, many of our employees have the exciting opportunity to be on the receiving end of this international exchange. From June 21-July 1, six students in our office, along with three University of Iowa students and our Executive Director, Amy Alice Chastain, will be traveling together to Fuzhou, China for a cultural exchange entitled “Bond with Kuliang: 2024 China-U.S. Youth Festival.” 


This opportunity was first introduced to our office by Tony Joseph, a local partner who was looking to recruit 9 to 10 University of Iowa students to participate in this China exchange. The exchange originates from President Xi Jinping's visit to the United States in November 2023. There, he announced that China would invite 50,000 young Americans to China during the next 5 years. 

Upon arriving in Fuzhou, our group will be joining hundreds of other US college students. After registration, we have one week of various events and activities: fireside talks, round tables, a youth fair, and more. Before returning to the United States, all participants of the exchange have the option visit another city in China. Our group will be traveling to Nanjing for a visit called “Cultural Heritage Site & Green Economy.” We will be in Nanjing for three days and have many opportunities to dive into Chinese culture.  


Some of the highlights of our Nanjing visit will be visiting the Nanjing Hongshan Forest Zoo to learn about the concepts of animal welfare and species protection and experience animal rearing work. We will also visit Nanjing Fuzi Temple, Nanjing Institute of Geology and Paleontology and Chinese Academy of Sciences, Small West Lake historical area, the Chinese Imperial Examination Museum, and much more!  

Please keep an eye on our social media for updates before, during, and after this important and exciting exchange! 


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