Facebook icon Twitter icon Forward icon

Advocacy Day & Region IV Grants

Advocacy Day, March 19-20 in Washington D.C.

NAFSA's annual Advocacy Day will be March 19-20, 2018 in Washington D.C.  Early bird registration is now open and ends February 20, 2018. This year, Advocacy Day is more important than ever.

This is incredibly important in the current climate and we encourage members to help amplify NAFSA’s voice on these issues.

Region IV offers a limited number of travel grants. Apply here for a Region IV Grant. Applications will be accepted until February 5, 2018.

If you cannot make it to Advocacy Day – or even if you can – we urge you to check out NAFSA’s Connecting Our World advocacy page to see how you can support advocacy efforts right from your home or office.

Tri-Regional Conference Highlights

Regional connections, global reach. Three circles appear, one shows mountains, the other dessert, the third shows wind.

Region IV, along with Regions I & II, hosted a successful tri-regional conference in Denver, Colorado. Although, as it turns out, it was not the first tri-regional in NAFSA history, it was a success all the same.

It was great to see Region IV so well represented at the Tri-Regional Conference!  A big thanks to all who volunteered and/or presented at the conference – you are what made the event such a success!  We also want to recognize our three Regional Award winners:

  • Outstanding New Professional Award:
    Taylor Kinde (University of Central Missouri)
  • Friend of the Region Award:
    Suzi Aadland (South Dakota School of Mines & Technology)
  • Distinguished Service Award:
    Judy Todd (University of Missouri)

Thank you to Beth Riley (Conference Planner) for all of her efforts to ensure that the Tri-Regional Conference was a triumph!

Region IV Team

Region IV Team

Region IV Volunteers

Region IV Volunteers

Tri-Regional Gala Photo Booth

Tri-Regional Gala Photo Booth

Tri-Regional Keynote

Keynote Speech: Dr. Brimmer

NAFSA Academy Coach

NAFSA Academy Coach

Tri-Regional Hotel

Tri-Regional Hotel

Region IV Team Updates

A big thanks to all of the outgoing members of the Region IV Leadership team. Volunteer member-leaders are the backbone of NAFSA and the time dedicated in service to the region by these professionals is very much appreciated: Karen Williams, Past Chair; Beth Riley, Conference Planner; Heejung Cromley, Treasurer; Tami Lorenson, Secretary; Molly Hoffman, Communications Coordinator; Lee Seedorff, International Education Leadership Representative; Taylor Kinde, Teaching Learning and Scholarship Representative; Karla McCollum, Community College Representative; Joanna Mendez, Public Policy Representative; Kaaren Quezada, Scholar Regulatory Ombudsperson; Ken Nesbett, Iowa State Representative; Kelley Patriat, Minnesota State Representative; Perzen Polishwalla, North Dakota State Representative.

Rebecca Bahan completed her time as Missouri State Representative and has been elected next Chair-Elect. Also, Bella Hetich will be moving from her role of International Enrollment Management Representative to that of Treasurer and Stacey Schmidt finished her term as South Dakota Representative but has decided to serve another term in that role. 

Congratulations and welcome to the new Region IV leadership team members who will begin their terms on January 1st: Leigh Neys, Conference Planner; Lyndesey Andersen, Local Arrangements Chair; Kat Lundberg, Communications Coordinator; Eynar Pineda, Secretary; Ryan Dye, International Education Leadership Representative; Becky Hanson, International Enrollment Management Representative; Tara Harvey, Teaching Learning and Scholarship Representative; Steve Rude, Community College Representative; Katy Hawks, Public Policy Representative; Becky Zama, Scholar Regulatory Ombudsperson; Amy Bowes, Iowa State Representative; Hannah Olevson, Minnesota State Representative; Patrick Parnell, Missouri State Representative and Libby Claerbout, North Dakota State Representative. 

If you are interested in serving on the Region IV Leadership team, contact any current or past members for more information.

Lastly, Region IV membership voted to approve an updated version of our Regional Operating Procedures at the Tri-Regional in Denver.  The document is being formatted and will be available on the Region IV website soon.

Ryan Griffin
Region IV Chair

Meet the New Chair-Elect: Rebecca Bahan

Rebecca Bahan, Chair-Elect

Congratulations to Rebecca Bahan who was voted Region IV's Chair-Elect. We are excited to have her continue on with the Region IV team in this new capacity. Learn more about Rebecca below and send her a hearty congratulations.

Current Institution: Fontbonne University
How long have you been a NAFSA member? I’ve been involved with NAFSA for approximately 15 years (!)
How did you become interested in international education?  I’ve always had an interest in international education, most likely because my family hosted international students when I was growing up.  I also have a family that loves to travel.  My brother and sister have both lived in other countries (either through study abroad or Peace Corps) and my parents will travel to their 7th continent in February!  You could say international education is in my blood!
What are some of your goals as chair-elect? I believe the chair-elect role will be a crucial time in learning about how “big” NAFSA and the regions all work together toward a common goal.  I hope to learn more about the chair-stream roles as well as how we can best convey the meaning and duties of those roles to our region. 
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be? Whew.  That’s a tough one.  I’ve been fortunate to travel to so many countries in my tenure as an international educator.   However, my bucket list includes the Great Pyramids of Giza,  the northern lights – viewed from Iceland, and Yellowstone National Park (in winter)!


Knowledge Community (KC) Updates

NAFSA is divided into five Knowledge Communities, each with its own team member representative.

State Updates

NAFSA Region IV is comprised of five states (IA, MN, MO, SD, ND), each with its own team member representative:


Be part of the conversation at the 6th Annual Iowa International Educators Conference by proposing a session! Proposals are due Friday, March 2 and can be completed here. NAFSA and non-NAFSA members are welcome to present and attend the conference.

The conference will take place on Friday, April 20 at Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa.

Registration for the conference will open February 1, the fee for attendance will be $25. The fee includes a continental breakfast and lunch. Registration for student participants is free. Vendors who are interested in participating and promoting should reach out to conference planners, Karla McCollum Karla.McCollum@indianhills.edu and Ashley Albertson Ashley.Albertson@indianhills.edu for more information.

At this time we are still looking for a keynote speaker for the conference. If you have any suggestions, especially faculty or staff from your campus or local speakers who are appropriate for international educators, please feel free to reach out to NAFSA Region IV Iowa Rep, Amy Bowes amy-bowes@uiowa.edu.

We look forward to seeing you all in Ottumwa in April!

Meet the New IA Rep: Amy Bowes

Amy Bowes has just joined the Region IV team as previous Iowa Representative rotates off the team. Welcome, Amy!

Institution: University of Iowa, Study Abroad International Programs.
How long have you been a NAFSA member? Just about 4 years total (Region VII and Region IV!)
How did you become interested in international education? I was a Peace Corps Fellow at the University of Missouri and I worked with Jason Kinnear on developing new service learning programming for undergraduates. I co-led the first group to Ghana in 2010 and was hooked!
What are some of your goals with the new position? I’d like to continue to develop the Iowa International Educators conference, increasing participation and creating space for Iowans to connect on the issues that are important to us. I’m also excited to help Iowans connect with NAFSA resources, learn more about professional opportunities offered through NAFSA, and ensure our state’s voice is heard at all levels of the association.
What’s your favorite travel memory? My Peace Corps site was about 16 hours from Lesotho’s capitol city and the journey required changing buses three times. On one of my first trips down the mountain I sat down on the back bench of a mini bus and, while waiting for the taxi to fill, I kept hearing strange noises that I couldn’t place. The woman ahead of me saw my concern and tried to tell me what was it was in Sesotho, but I was still pretty new to the language and didn’t understand. Finally, she lifted her nose and oinked—clearly letting me know there was a live pig packed under my seat!
If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would it be? I’d really like to make my next big trip to Asia, since I’ve never been. Maybe Thailand or China?

IEP Conference from EnglishUSA

English USA the American Association of Intensive English Programs

New! CALLING ALL Intensive English Program PROFESSIONALS

For NAFSA members involved in IEP, you may be interested in an upcoming opportunity from EnglishUSA. Although this organization is not affiliated with NAFSA, it may be beneficial to you professionally.

The EnglishUSA Professional Development Conference will be held January 18-19, 2018 in Monterey, California at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (MIIS).

This year's conference will include:

  • Over 50 concurrent sessions and posters
  • Exhibitors with products and services specifically designed for IEPs
  • Breakfast, hot/cold beverages, and lunch included both days
  • Networking Reception with conference attendees (beer/wine open bar, hors-d'oeuvres)

Non-members and members are welcome!  If you don't know if you are a member, please contact info@englishusa.org and also visit the registration webpage for more information on registration.

Job Vacancies / Google Group

We encourage you to join and use the Region IV Google Group -- our primary email list-serv -- to be sure you don't miss any updates! In addition to important NAFSA member info, this list includes other international education-related announcements and job vacancies.

You can select the frequency of email notifications by going to My SettingsMembership and email settings, then setting email delivery preference (individual emails, daily summaries, etc.)

Stay Connected with Region IV

Newsletter Sponsorship

Please contact the Communications Coordinator if you are interested in sponsorship opportunities.