March 2016 News - In this issue...
Essay Contests • AEP Forum â€¢ Online Curriculum
New Board Membersʉۢ Fundraising Campaign
Outreach Growsʉۢ UVA Abdelkader Fellows
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Abdelkader Global Leadership Prize
($5,500 Scholarship Awards)
Essay Deadline: April 15, 2016
ATTN: High School & College Students. Increase cultural awareness and global competency by discovering relevant history for today. Explore virtues of an acclaimed humanitarian and ethical leader admired by President Lincoln, Queen Victoria, and Pope Pius IX. Upon Emir Abdelkader's death in 1883, The New York Times eulogized, “…The nobility of his character won him the admiration of the world… He was one of the few great men of the century.”

Make a Difference! Enter the Abdelkader Global Leadership Prize essay contests with monetary scholarship awards and honors. Find details at

Essay Scholarship Awards
Iowa High School students (1st Place = $1,000; 2nd Place = $500)
U.S. High School students (1st Place = $1,000; 2nd Place = $500)
U.S. College/University students (1st Place = $1,500; 2nd Place = $1,000)

Essay Winners "In Their Own Words"
Mandy Conrad, University of Iowa: "Emir Abd el-Kader’s treatment of prisoners was a forerunner of the Geneva Convention, and the principles that dictated the humane treatment of prisoners were grounded in Islam." 
James Wendt, Naperville North High School, Illinois: â€œAbdelkader was a revolutionary. His transcendent, progressive views about religion, human rights, and where the two converge still inspire.”

Online Curriculum Launched
ISLAMIC NETWORKS GROUP (ING) in California just released a new online curriculum titled Emir Abd el-Kader: A Muslim Hero for our Time. This timely curriculum is about a Muslim leader (Elkader, Iowa's namesake) who became a great reconciler of the 19th century. Abdelkader's moral courage, character and ethical behavior on and off the battlefield was rooted in a faith that bears no resemblance to the deformed face of Islam seen today in the media. This curriculum offers an important resource for educators in middle and high school as well as college to introduce a powerful narrative of Islam to help students understand it has many faces, as does Christianity. The interactive curriculum includes a digital presentation accompanied by scripts and discussion questions, video links, and educator resources. The curriculum is based on John W. Kiser’s biography, Commander of the Faithful: The Life and Times of Emir Abd el-Kader.
AEP Welcomes New Board Members
DAISY KHAN (NYC) is Executive Director of Women’s Islamic Initiative in Spirituality and Equality (WISE), a NYC based non-profit dedicated to building a unified, compassionate change movement of Muslim women and men committed to creating a peaceful and equitable environment. Khan lectures in the U.S. and internationally and has won awards for her work. Her current project involves helping U.S. Muslim communities to counter radical Islamist ideology in concert with law enforcement communities. When presenting role models for young Muslims, Emir Abdelkader is featured as a prime example.
DARYL BEALL (IA) received his MPA from Drake University. He was a newspaper editor, publisher, columnist; served three terms in Iowa Senate and chaired joint House-Senate Int’l Relations and Veterans Affairs Committees; and was commissioner for Education Commission of the States. Daryl was a charter board member of US Center for Citizen Diplomacy, served on the Iowa International Center board and currently serves on the Drake University International Advisory Council. He has led international delegations, received many honors and has been involved with establishing Sister City relationships.
Fundraising Campaign Begins
AEP IS LAUNCHING A SERIES OF OUTREACH MEETINGS with business leaders, other funders and potential allies who could help expand programs, operations and growth capacity over the next two years. A goal of raising $300,000 for a development phase will add staff and capacity. AEP activities—annual forum and essay contests, educational tools, outreach and numerous partnerships are expanding and a stronger organizational base is needed. AEP co-founders John Kiser and Kathy Garms will participate in the initial meetings in California with stops in the Bay Area, LA, and San Diego. Details TBA.

AEP Network Grows
DIVERSITY FOCUS IN CEDAR RAPIDS, IOWA is part of the Cedar Rapids/Iowa City Corridor Community where CEO/President Chad Simmons leads the promotion of diversity, cultural awareness and inclusion efforts. Diversity Focus and AEP are pleased to collaborate in preparing for upcoming AEP events. Stay tuned for updates.

University of Virginia - Abdelkader Fellow Program
Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture

ABDELKADER FELLOW - LARYCIA HAWKINS, PhD University of Oklahoma. Hawkin's research engages the intersections of race/ethnicity, religion, and politics. She is also reviving knowledge and awareness of a forgotten historical figure, Emir Abdelkader. His life as a warrior, scholar, and saint embodied values much needed by today’s leaders: moral courage, empathy, openness, passion, and humility.

ABDELKADER POSTDOCTORAL FELLOW - JEFF GUHIN, PhD Sociology at Yale University. Specialties include education, religion, theory, and culture. His research involves an ethnographic comparison of morality and citizenship in three urban public school districts. It is a part of the Institute’s "School Cultures and Student Formation Project," for which Guhin is the lead researcher for urban public schools. He is also engaged in comparative study of Catholic schools and Muslim madrassas.
ABDELKADER EDUCATION PROJECT (AEP) is a 501c3 non-profit organization that promotes cultural literacy, civility, and respectful engagement between all people through education and outreach drawing on Emir Abdelkader's life story and values – courage, integrity, intellect, humility and compassion – that transcend culture and faith traditions.

AEP DEVELOPMENT AND PROGRAM FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES are available. Becoming a sponsor demonstrates commitment to education in building cultural understanding and providing global perspectives for educators and students as well as business, social and political leaders of all faiths and cultures. To donate and learn more, please visit our website or contact   
Abdelkader Education Project
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