January 17, 2014

Join a February 24th Panel Discussion: The Role of Cross-Cultural Education in Strengthening Civil Society

For over 25 years, the International Education and Resource Network (iEARN) has built global bridges through both physical and technology-enabled cross-cultural exchange programs for K-12 youth and young adults.

Join iEARN leaders from Bangladesh, Liberia, Mali, Pakistan and the U.S. on February 24th for an illuminating discussion on how innovative cross-cultural exchanges and educational initiatives are helping to strengthen civil society in their respective countries by inspiring young people to think globally and act locally.   Panelists will also look at how programs such as the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study Abroad Program, funded by the U.S. Department of State and created in response to 9/11, are fostering cross-cultural understanding between youth in predominately Muslim countries and the United States.  In addition, speakers will discuss how the field of “virtual exchange” –technology-enabled, sustained, people-to-people education programs –is making a cross-cultural education accessible to growing numbers of young people worldwide.

Please join us after the panel for a wine and cheese reception and an opportunity to meet the panelists as well as iEARN leaders from Israel, Cameroon, Sierra Leone and Suriname. Registration is free of charge. Click here to RSVP.

February 24, 2014
6:00-6:30 p.m. - Registration 
6:30-7:45 p.m. – Panel Discussion & Q&A

* Reception to follow.

iEARN-USA Office Building
Interchurch Center
475 Riverside Drive, Suite 450
New York, NY 10115

Corporate support provided by 

In Collaboration with



Featured Panelists and Presenters

Diane Charlton Midness: Moderator and Professional Development Consultant,     iEARN - United States

Diane Charlton Midness has been involved in International Education for over 25 years.  She is a graduate of Louisiana State University and received a Masters in Library and Information Science from North Carolina State University.  She was Media Coordinator at W.G. Enloe Magnet High School in Raleigh, NC where she became the Coordinating Teacher for Technology Integration.  The Center for International Understanding of The University of North Carolina had Diane as a teacher on loan to coordinate the International School Partnerships through Technology program with rural high schools in the state.  She started working at iEARN-USA in 2002 as Coordinator for the Friendship Through Technology, a program sponsored by the White House in response to 9/11.  As Special Projects manager she also coordinated iEARN-USA’s work with the US Department of State’s Educational Cultural Affairs Bureau’s Partnership for Learning Youth Exchange and Study Program and the Uzbekistan Connectivity Program.  Later she became Director of Professional Development. Currently she is enjoying retirement in coastal North Carolina.

Leroy McDyiah Beldeh: YES Executive Director, iEARN - Liberia

Leroy Beldeh serves as the Executive Director of iEARN-Liberia, a nonprofit organization, which enables young people to collaboratively make meaningful contributions to the world through the Internet and digital media. In this position, Leroy manages the Kennedy-Lugar Youth and Exchange and Study program in Liberia. He has the responsibility to publicize the program, conduct recruitment and prepare the students for their exchange year in the US. He also worked with Alumni of the program to develop innovative programs and project that significantly impact the students’ communities. Mr. Beldeh obtained his graduate degree in Political Science from the University of Liberia, and Master Degree in Environmental Policy from the University Of Denver, Colorado. He loves Eco-tourism and spends more time adventuring into woods and natural parks.

Farah Kamal: YES Executive Director, iEARN - Pakistan and the Director for the Youth Exchange and Study Program.

Farah Kamal is an education and development consultant, leading the iEARN programs in Pakistan in collaboration with 135 countries around the world. Ms. Kamal has over 15 years of experience of successful implementation of a range of international cross cultural projects in Pakistan and assisting her counterparts in other countries running similar projects. She has initiated several ICT programs in Pakistan which has provided authentic use of internet and telecommunications technologies to K-12 students and schools. Additionally, Ms. Kamal also administers programs creating opportunities for High school students and teachers to participate in exchanges and training programs internationally, specifically the United States.  She has a Master of Education degree at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada, in Language and Literacy Education and completed the Executive Program for the Leaders of Non profit Organizations from Graduate School of Business-Stanford University. She also received a teacher training and mentoring certificate from Oxford University UK, and have completed the Diploma of School Management from Aga Khan University-Institute of Educational Development. 

Sounkalo DEMBELE YES Program Director, iEARN – Mali

Sounkalo Dembele is now working for IEARN-Mali to recruit Malian Students for the YES inbound program. Mr. Dembele is the founder of SchoolNetMali-Mokoya Juru that aims to connect people around the world with Mali and other African countries. Raised between Bamako, the capital of Mali and its suburban towns; Mr. Dembele has been involved in cultural exchanges since secondary school and at University as chairman of English Club by organization meeting with Peace Corps and Malian students and through his in country management of the YES Abroad program which sends U.S. High School students to Mali to study for one academic year.

Rajib Lochan: Co-coordinator of iEARN – Bangladesh.

Rajib Lochan Das serves as a Co-coordinator of iEARN-BD, responsible for recruiting young Bangladeshi students for the Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program in Bangladesh sponsored by the U.S. Department of State. iEARN-BD is dedicated to facilitate collaborative learning projects between Bangladeshi schools and other counterparts around the world. Mr. Lochan motivates engagement of Bangladeshi teachers in the collaborative projects. Through YES program Mr. Lochan enjoys opportunities to conduct the recruitment of potential young scholars of 15 to 17 years and help prepare them for studying and living in the USA for one academic year. Mr. Lochan  recieved his MSc in Mathematics from Dhaka University in 1993 and started teaching at a higher secondary school. In 2009, he achieved MBA degree from IBA of Dhaka University and started university teaching. Mr. Lochan has written 8 books so far; one on music and others on daily mathematics. Music is his passion and he loves seeing lives and places. 


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