Deputy Consul General, Consulate General of Israel to the Midwest meets with Iowa City, UI leaders

Daniel Aschheim, deputy consul general and consulate general of Israel to the Midwest, met with leaders from the University of Iowa and Iowa City during a visit to give a lecture hosted by International Programs and the Tippie College of Business.


Grace Kreber

Daniel Aschheim, the consulate general of Israel to the Midwest, visited Iowa City for the first time. On Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in the University of Iowa international program’s office.

Josie Fischels, Managing Editor

Deputy Consul General, Consulate General of Israel to the Midwest Daniel Aschheim visited Iowa City this week, speaking with several community leaders during his stay.

Part of an outreach program to visit 20 key academic institutions within the consulate’s nine-state Midwestern region, Aschheim spent Tuesday and Wednesday in Iowa City visiting with members of the Iowa City City Council, University of Iowa President Barbara Wilson, and giving presentations and meeting faculty in various departments at the university, including the UI School of Music.

On Tuesday, Aschheim gave a lecture at the Pappajohn Business Building hosted by International Programs and the Tippie College of Business to discuss Israel’s “start-up nation” culture, as well as Israeli technology and its impact on the world.

During his visits, Aschheim said he’s discussed the city and university’s strategic plans as they pertain to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

“With the mayor, we’ve spoken, and we heard what are the strategic goals in Iowa City, what are they promoting? And we realized that diversity, inclusion, and equity is… something that is very heavily promoted here in the city and is really making it an international place.”

Aschheim has also discussed exploring new partnerships between the University of Iowa and Israeli academic institutions while promoting existing ones, like the current collaboration between the University of Iowa School of Music and Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance.

The relationship between the two schools has been ongoing for the past few years and intrigued the Consulate when they initially reached out to the University of Iowa International Programs and other Big Ten universities last spring, said Russ Ganim, associate provost and dean of International Programs.

International Programs created an itinerary for the Aschheim that included several other members of the university community.

“I’m excited in terms of furthering this collaboration with the School of Music. We also met extensively with students and faculty from the Tippie College of business yesterday. So, I think that there are areas or possible areas of collaboration that we can pursue there,” Ganim said.

Ganim added that International Programs frequently bring foreign delegations to campus, such as representatives from Kenya, Taiwan, and Kosovo, to forward its effort to internationalize the UI.

“Bringing in delegations gives kind of a cultural and diplomatic dimension to this internationalization effort, but it’s also part of bringing in faculty from other parts of the world, students from other parts of the world, research. We want our campus to mirror the world in many different ways, and the best way to do that is to bring people and experts who can share their expertise and who can share their experiences with the rest of our community,” Ganim said.

The trip is Aschheim’s first time in Iowa, but he said he plans to return soon. Just next month, he said the consul general will travel to Des Moines to address the House and meet Gov. Kim Reynolds.

In the meantime, Aschheim has visited the College of Business, toured the traveling Anne Frank exhibit at the Old Capitol Museum, conversed with several members of International Programs, and met with faculty in the university’s various colleges, including Public Health, Engineering, Sociology, and Criminology.

“We are here, and this message is important in Iowa, and we are feeling this warmth in all directions, and we hope it’s going to continue to grow in all measures,” he said.