• Germany
  • Republic of Georgia
  • Vatican
  • Russia
  • Afghanistan
  • Ethiopia
  • Pakistan
  • Botswana
  • Egypt
  • Moldova
  • Vietnam
  • India
  • Greece
  • Poland
  • Canada
  • Peru
  • Korea
  • Haiti
  • Austria

2016 Events

January 16, 2016 - Old Russian New Year Celebration

UVU International Affair & Diplomacy Office Celebrates the 2016 Russian New Year

UVU's Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy hosted the long anticipated Old New Year Celebration. Traditional dishes filled the potluck tables and much fun was at the Children's Craft Table and New Year Photo Booth - especially when Ded Moroz and Snegurochka made their appearance at the end of the evening!


 UVU Russian teachers: Marina Panina and Olga Jarrell. 


 Russian "Kalinka" dance performed by UVU student. 

Ded Moroz and Snegurochka

Snegurochka and Ded Moroz pass out New Years treats to children.

Rusty and Cholpon

 Russian friends and family take New Years photo.

February 20-28th, 2016 - Open World Ukraine Delegation

UVU hosting Ukrainian delegates studying accountable governance

University Marketing & Communications: Melinda Colton | 801-863-6807 | melindac@uvu.edu

Written by: Alex Sousa | 801-863-8208 | ASousa@uvu.edu

Utah Valley University will host a delegation of six Ukrainian leaders participating in the Open World Program. The delegates will spend Feb. 20–28 in Utah learning more about accountable governance.

The delegation will tour UVU on Feb. 22, followed by a discussion on political parties at the national and local levels and the role of public opinion with Jay DeSart, professor of political science. The delegates will also give a presentation to students from the political science, peace and justice, and constitutional studies classes.

“This delegation of key decision makers will have great influence among their peers while allowing our students and faculty to engage with them,” said Rusty Butler, associate vice president for UVU International Affairs & Diplomacy.

The delegation consists of Yevheniia Hafurova, advising assistant to a People’s Deputy of Ukraine; Vasyl Sehin, assistant to Member of Parliament; Mariana Semehen, advising assistant to a People’s Deputy of Ukraine; Mariia Zakharenko, assistant to Member of Parliament; Anton Zhemerdieiev, advising assistant to a People’s Deputy of Ukraine; and Hanna Antonova who will accompany them from Ukraine as a facilitator.

While in Utah, the delegates will meet with state representatives, senators, and mayors and city councils of Orem, Provo and Lehi, Utah. They will also take part in several cultural and community activities, and experience American family life through homestays with local residents.

Managed by the independent Open World Leadership Center at the Library of Congress, Open World enables emerging Eurasian political and civic leaders to work with their U.S. counterparts and experience American-style democracy at the local level.

For more information, please contact Guia Soleta at 801-863-7191 or at gsoleta@uvu.edu. For more information on Open World, please visit www.openworld.gov

OW Ukraine

Ukrainian Delegates with Lehi City Administrators.

OW Ukraine

Visiting with Jennifer Andelin at Congressman Jason Chaffetz Provo office

OW Ukraine

Open World Delegates are presented on the Senate Floor at the Utah State Capitol.

OW Ukraine

The Open World Delegation enjoys Utah Olympic Park.

March 3, 2016 - Pacific Alliance Economic Summit at UVU 


UVU Welcomes Four Ambassadors to the Pacific Alliance Summit

Utah Valley University, in cooperation with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and the World Trade Center Utah, hosted ambassadors to the United States from Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru for the Pacific Alliance economic summit on the University’s Orem campus March 3–4, 2016. The Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy sponsored a VIP luncheon for the visiting ambassadors and Utah’s prominent leaders in education, government and business. The Pacific Alliance is an initiative of regional integration and trade cooperation comprised of these four founding countries. The ambassadors include Juan Gabriel Valdés Soublette, Chile; Juan Carlos Pinzón, Colombia; Miguel Basáñez Ebergenyi, Mexico; and Luis Miguel Castilla, Perú. 


March 8, 2016 - Leslie Dee Ann Mower is awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Kyrgyz International University

Dressed in full Kyrgyz regalia, UVU National Presidential Advisory Board (NPAB) member and primary donor to the Office of International Affairs and Diplomacy Ambassador Lecture program, Leslie Dee Ann Mower, is awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters by the vice Rector of Kyrgyz International University. The event was held at UVU on March 8, International Women's Day, with many of her family, friends and UVU leadership in attendance.


Leslie Dee Ann Mower receives an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Kyrgyz International University.


Leslie Dee Ann Mower gives her remarks.


Honoree, Leslie Dee Ann Mower with friends and family.

March 16, 2016 - Retirement of Dr. Ross “Rusty” Butler from Utah Valley University

Rusty Butler was celebrated on March 16, 2016 for his 20+ years at Utah Valley University. University administrators, faculty, staff and students were joined by the Russian Consul General, several honorary consuls, government leaders, LDS Church hosting representatives, family and members of the community in expressing their well wishes at his retirement. Rusty's contribution to UVU and to the State of Utah is undeniable and he will be greatly missed! 


President Holland and VP Cameron Martin recognize Rusty on his retirement from UVU.


Rusty Butler's gives his remarks.

Rusty Butler's retirement from UVU.

 President National Advisory Board congratulates Rusty on his retirement.


 Russian Consul General, Sergey Petrov, recognizes Rusty for his service as Honorary Consul.

April 8, 2016 - Ms. Katalin Bogyay - Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Hungary to the United Nations

Hungary banner

April 8, 2016 - Katalin Bogyay, Ambassador of Hungary to the United Nations

Katalin Bogyay, ambassador and permanent representative of Hungary to the United Nations, will present a lecture at Utah Valley University on April 8. Entitled “Promoting Understanding Among Nations: Multilateral Diplomacy and the Soft Power,” the lecture is open to the public and begins at 11 a.m. in Liberal Arts Building room 114w.

Bogyay served as her country’s Ambassador and Permanent Delegate to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. From 2011-12, she was president of UNESCO’s General Conference.

From 2006-09 she was Hungary’s State Secretary for International Affairs for Education and Culture and was previously the founding director of the Hungarian Cultural Centre in London.

She has also had a distinguished career as an international television broadcaster, film producer and writer, and is the author of several books and publications. A guest lecturer at universities and international conferences, she has a master’s degree in economics from Corvinus University of Budapest and a Master of Arts in international communication from the University of Westminster in the United Kingdom.

Hungary shares its borders with Austria, Croatia, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Ukraine. It has a population of 10 million and its capital is Budapest. It fell under communist rule after World War II. Communism in Hungary ended in 1989 and the country became a parliamentary republic.

UVU’s Office of International Affairs and Diplomacy supports the University’s global engagement efforts by helping students become globally competent graduates, promoting cultural literacy and diversity on campus and in the community.

More information on Bogyay’s presentation is available by contacting the UVU Office of International Affairs and Diplomacy at 801-863-7191.

Click here for more information on Ambassador Katalin Bogyay.


 The UN Ambassador from Hungary with her husband at UVU.


 Ambassador Bogyay is joined by the Honorary Consul for Hungary in Utah, George Simon, and Dr. Baldomero Lago.


 Amy Barnett and Guia Cowley from the Office of International Affairs with  Ambassador Bogyay.


Ambassador Bogyay and her husband enjoy a quick trip up to the Sundance Resort.

September 15 – 16, 2016 – Building Bridges: Georgian Art & Politics Symposium with the UN Ambassador, Consul General and Cultural Attaché from the Republic of Georgia 


September 15 – 16, 2016 – Building Bridges: Georgian Art & Politics Symposium with the UN Ambassador, Consul General and Cultural Attaché from the Republic of Georgia

Written by: | Barbara Christiansen

Utah Valley University is building bridges of international understanding with a workshop on the past, present and future of political influence on the cultural landscape of the Republic of Georgia. The workshop is free and open to the public and will be in the auditorium of the University’s library on Thursday, Sept. 15, from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Speakers at the workshop include Kaha Imnadze, Georgia’s United Nations ambassador; Diana Zhgenti, the consul general of Georgia in New York; and David Aladashvili, Zhgenti’s cultural attaché.

In addition, the two winners of a UVU essay contents, titled “Impressions of Soviet Georgia: Personal Expression within the Collective Identity,” will read their winning essays. The essays were written in response to an exhibit of Soviet-era art at the Springville Museum of Art.

“There were some pieces of art that had been saved from an opera house that was being torn down,” said Amy Barnett, coordinator of International Affairs and Diplomacy at UVU. “We talked with the director, and it evolved into the Georgian Art and Politics Symposium.”

Once part of the Soviet Union, Georgia regained its independence in 1991. The country later pursued a pro-Western foreign policy, which lead to problems in relations with Russia and the brief Russo-Georgian War.

 Master Class

David Aladashvili gives a master class go UVU music students.

Morning Event

Our Georgian guests are presented with awards and gifts by Dr. Baldomero Lago and Dr. Frederick White.

At Museum

Lost & Foud Exhibition at the Springville Museum of Art.

At Capitol

Consul General Diana Zhgenti with Franz Kolb from the Governors Office of Economic Development.


Dinner at the Lion House Restaurant hosted by LDS Public Affairs.

October 7, 2016 - The Honorable Musa Francis Ecweru, Minister of State for Refugees and Disaster Preparedness from Uganda

Minister of Uganda

Ugandan Minister of Relief, Disaster Preparedness and Refugees, Mr. Musa Ecweru, visited UVU on October 7 where he gave a lecture to UVU students and met with President Matthew Holland.

Musa Francis Ecweru (born November 25, 1964), is an accountant and politician in Uganda. He is the current State Minister for Relief and Disaster Preparedness in the Ugandan Cabinet. He was appointed to this position on 1 June 2006. He is also the elected Member of Parliament (MP), representing Amuria County, Amuria District. Musa Ecweru holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Democracy & Development Studies from Uganda Martyrs University in Nkozi, Mpigi District. Between 1992 and 1993, he served as the Local Defence Commander (LDU), Teso sub-region. Since 2003, he has served as Chief of the Arrow Auxiliary Force, a volunteer force that protected civilians from the ravages of the Lords Resistance Army. In 2006, he successfully contested for the parliamentary seat of Amuria County in Amuria District. He was re-elected in March 2011, as is the incumbent MP.

October 25, 2016 - UVU Diplomatic Conference on International Trade Relations

Diplomatic Conference

On October 25 we welcomed Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, consuls general from 11 countries and international business leaders from throughout the Wasatch Front to UVU. The Office for Global Engagement hosted the inaugural event which brought together diplomats, corporate leaders and students in this unique networking environment.

This conference served as a powerful forum to exchange ideas, to network and to collaborate with entities in the state of Utah, both economic and academic. It offered breakout sessions where individual countries were featured and conference participants were able to interact with trade representatives directly.

Participants in the 2016 Diplomatic Conference included the following country representatives:

  • Consul General of Chile in LA: Mr. Jorge A. Tagle
  • Consul General of the Czech Republic in LA: Mr. Pavol Sepelak
  • Consul General of Japan in Denver: Mr. Makoto Ito
  • Consul General of South Korea in SF: Mr. Shin Chae-Hyun
  • Consul General of Mexico in Salt Lake City: Mr. Javier Chagoya
  • Consul General of New Zealand in LA: Mr. Leon Grice
  • Consul General of Peru in Denver: Mr. Eduardo Barandiaran
  • Consul General of Spain In LA: Mr. Francisco Javier Vallaure
  • Honorary Consul General of Switzerland in Utah: Mr. Daniel Oswald
  • Director General of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in SF: Mr. Joseph C. L. Ma
  • Deputy Consul General of the United Kingdom in LA: Ms. Bernadette Greene

All ambassadors

Consuls General and trade representatives from 11 different countries with Lt. Governor Spencer Cox. 

LT Governor Speaking

Keynote speaker, Lt. Governor Spencer Cox.

BL Speaking

Dr. Baldomero Lago, associate vice president for Global Engagement address the audience during the Plenary Session.

UK Panel Session

Honorary Consul General for Switzerland in Utah, Daniel Oswald, and Deputy Consul General from the UK, Bernadette Greene field questions during the Breakout Session.

Taiwan Networking

Trade specialists from the Taipei Economic and Culture Office - San Francisco during the Networking session.


Cameron Martin, VP University Relations meets with some of the events corporate sponsors during the VIP luncheon.

October 25, 2016 - Dr. Lago is honored by the Kingdom of Spain and Governor Herbert

Dr. Lago is honored by the Kingdom of Spain and Governor Herbert

UVU's assistant vice president for Global Engagement, Dr. Baldomero Lago, was recently installed as Knight Commander of the Royal Order of the Civil Merit of the Kingdom of Spain.

The decoration was presented by His Excellency Ambassador Javier Vallaure, under the direction of Spanish King Felipe VI. The Order of Civil Merit was established by King Alfonso XIII of Spain, to prize the civic virtues and as well as extraordinary services performed by Spanish citizens for the good of Nation. This was the highest Spanish decoration ever presented to a Utah resident. 

Governor Herbert also recognized Dr. Lago's accomplishments by issuing a formal decoration. 

A native of Santander, Spain, Dr. Lago, has served as Honorary Consul of Spain since 1999, President of the Utah Consular Corps, and currently serves as Vice President of the World Trade Association.

Dr Lago

Dr. Baldemero Lago with the Consul General and Trade Advisor from Spain.

Dr Lago Declaration

Official declaration from Governor Gary R. Herbert.

October 28, 2016 - Charge d'Affaires of Belarus to the United States Pavel Shidlovsky visits Utah


Belarusian Charge d'Affaires, Pavel Shidlovsky and Dennis Neuenschwander are joined by UVU's Global Engagement aVP Baldomero Lago and Coordinator Amy Barnett as they met with Franz Kolb from the Governor's Office of Economic Development on October 28, 2016.

Click here for more information about his visit.

October 31, 2016 - Mr. Harald Braun - Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Germany to the United Nations

German Banner

October 31, 2016 - Mr. Harald Braun, Ambassador of Germany to the United Nations

Utah Valley University is pleased to host His Excellency Ambassador Harald Braun, the permanent representative to the United Nations from Germany, who will present a lecture titled “Germany’s Role in the United Nations” on Oct. 31 at 10 a.m. in the Sorensen Center, room 213a.

“We are honored to have Ambassador Braun as a guest lecturer at the University,” said Amy Barnett, coordinator for Global Engagement, in the Office of International Affairs & Diplomacy. “Our students will not only learn about Germany’s current influence and role at the United Nations but will also have a chance to interact with the ambassador during his lecture.”

Prior to his appointment as permanent representative in March 2014, Braun served as state secretary of the Federal Foreign Office, director-general for Management of the German Foreign Office, chief of staff to the foreign minister, and deputy foreign and security advisor to the federal chancellor. His former diplomatic postings include Beirut, London, Bujumbura, Washington, and Paris. He also took a three-year leave of absence from diplomatic service to serve as corporate senior vice president for policy and external relations of Siemens AG.

Braun studied economics and history in Tübingen and New York, and completed a doctorate at the State University of New York at Stony Brook before entering the foreign service in 1981. In 2008, he was named research professor for global studies and diplomacy at SUNY at Stony Brook. He has also been awarded honorary citizenship of Washington, D.C.

Click here for more information on Ambassador Harald Braun.

German Ambassador with exchange students

Ambassador Harald Braun with German exchange students.

German Ambassador and his wife

Ambassador Braun is presented with an honorable professor award by Dr. Baldomero Lago.