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U.N. expert's lecture to highlight day honoring award recipients

4/1/2008

Kandeh K. Yumkella
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Kandeh K. Yumkella, director-general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, is the recipient of the 2007 Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement.

Matt VanderZalm, communications coordinator, International Programs and Studies
217-244-1724; il-intl@illinois.edu

Melissa Mitchell, News Editor
217-333-5491; melissa@illinois.edu

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. — The recipient of the University of Illinois’ 2007 Madhuri and Jagdish N. Sheth International Alumni Award for Exceptional Achievement will return to the campus April 2 to receive the award and deliver a lecture on global efforts to end poverty and hunger in the world’s poorest countries.

Tom Ginsburg
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Photo by L. Brian Stauffer
Thomas B. Ginsburg, a U. of I. professor of law and of political science, is the recipient of the Sheth Distinguished Faculty Award for International Achievement.

Kandeh K. Yumkella, director-general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization, will speak on “Achieving the Millennium Development Goals in a Changing Global ‘Climate,’ ” at 9 a.m. in the first floor ballroom of the Alice Campbell Alumni Center, 601 S. Lincoln Ave., Urbana. The talk will be preceded by a continental-breakfast reception at 8:30 a.m. in the first-floor Richmond Gallery, sponsored by the Alumni Association and the College of Agricultural Consumer and Environmental Sciences. Yumkella earned his doctorate from the college in 1991.

Yumkella’s talk will focus on what’s being done to address the goals of an ambitious, multi-part, U.N.-led initiative. Specifically, Yumkella will address measures being taken to meet the goal of cutting world poverty in half by 2015. Yumkella was to chair a session on the same topic at the U.N. on April 1.

Three other individuals will be recognized with 2007 international-achievement awards:

• Thomas B. Ginsburg, a U. of I. professor of law and of political science, recipient of the Sheth Distinguished Faculty Award for International Achievement.

• Dr. Peter J. Rohloff, executive director of Wuqu’ Kawoq, an organization that provides health care in Guatemala, winner of the Charles C. Stewart International Young Humanitarian Award and the Illinois International Graduate Achievement Award.

Peter Rohloff
Dr. Peter J. Rohloff, executive director of Wuqu’ Kawoq, an organization that provides health care in Guatemala, is the winner of the Charles C. Stewart International Young Humanitarian Award and the Illinois International Graduate Achievement Award.

• Sara Gibbs, a senior from Kell, Ill., majoring in international studies, recipient of the Illinois International Undergraduate Achievement award.

The Sheth international alumni award recognizes alumni who are highly distinguished in their profession and who have helped their nation or the world by their contributions to government, humanity, science, art or human welfare. The award is jointly sponsored by the Office of the Chancellor, Office of the Provost, and International Programs and Studies.

Yumkella, the 2007 recipient, is the former Minister of Trade, Industry and State Enterprises for his country of origin, Sierra Leone. With more than 20 years of experience in international development, he is recognized internationally for his leadership involving initiatives to encourage sustainable growth in the developing world.

The distinguished faculty award, established in 2002, acknowledges notable faculty members who have participated in international activities. Recipients are recognized for their contributions through teaching, research and public engagement.

Ginsburg, the 2007 recipient, is an alumnus of the University of California at Berkeley, where he received his undergraduate, law and doctoral degrees. He has a visiting appointment at the University of Chicago Law School.

Sara Gibbs
Sara Gibbs, a senior from Kell, Ill., majoring in international studies, is the recipient of the Illinois International Undergraduate Achievement Award.

Ginsburg’s book “Judicial Review in New Democracies” (Cambridge University Press), won the American Political Science Association’s C. Herman Pritchett Award for best book on law and courts in 2004. He serves as the co-director of the Cline Center’s Comparative Constitutions Project, and has worked extensively on constitutional and judicial reform projects abroad.

The humanitarian award, sponsored by the university’s associate provost for  international affairs, recognizes the accomplishments of young alumni considered to be international humanitarians. Winners, who must have graduated within five years of nomination, also must have contributed significantly as volunteers or professionals to the advancement, education and health and well-being or security of people outside the United States, or to global human welfare generally.

Additional award criteria include setting an example for others and demonstrating courage and dedication to the welfare of fellow global citizens.

The graduate award acknowledges a university graduate student whose international research or service, experienced through their U. of I.-affiliated international experience, has had the greatest impact or potential impact on the university or the larger community. Additional criteria include academic or service leadership while working with the public or an external organization, and a minimum grade-point average of 3.5 (on a 4.0 scale).

Rohloff, the 2007 recipient of the humanitarian and graduate awards, received two degrees from Illinois: a doctorate in pathobiology in 2003 and a medical degree in 2007. He began working in Guatemala in 2002 and continues to have research and service interests there. In addition to his position with Wuqu’ Kawoq, a non-governmental organization, he focuses on the ethnography of health and disease, ethnobotany and ethnomedicine, textile production and resource-poor health care delivery. He plans to begin a medical residency in internal medicine/pediatrics in Boston in July.

The undergraduate award acknowledges a significant contribution to an activity resulting from participation in an international course of study sponsored by a U. of I.-sanctioned program. Recipients, who must be in at least their second year of study at the university, also must have maintained a 2.5 grade-point average.

Gibbs, the 2007 recipient, spent a summer studying in Granada, Spain, and a semester studying and volunteering in Quito, Ecuador. At the U. of I., she is minoring in business and Spanish and has volunteered at the local refugee center, helping tutor bilingual children in Spanish and English.

Sharing experiences and insights gained through teaching classes to freshmen in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences’ Global Studies Initiative course, Gibbs collaborated with others to found the International Studies Students Association. She also is president of the U. of I. chapter of Habitat for Humanity, and as a Turner Fellow, has participated in an internship program sponsored by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student affairs.

Gibbs plans to pursue an advanced degree in student affairs and higher education.