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The Moroccan ambassador, Rachad Bouhlal, who has worked with UD's Audrey
Helfman to enhance study abroad programs for students, recently invited
students and faculty to his home for lunch.
1:31 p.m., March 27, 2013--The University of Delawares Audrey Helfman, associate professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration,
has led study abroad programs around the world, teaching leadership
dynamics, direct action organizing and coalition building in countries
like Vietnam, Laos, Egypt and Morocco.
But her most recent study abroad excursion to Morocco was like nothing she or her students had experienced before.
Distinguishing this trip from others were numerous opportunities
provided to the group by Rachad Bouhlal, Moroccan ambassador to the U.S.
Bouhlal arranged for formal VIP meetings with two walis, provincial
governors nominated by the king, as well as briefings by members of
their executive staffs. The students asked questions about the
governance systems in each province to better understand the process of
leadership within urban areas in Morocco.
Helfman also met with the vice chancellor of the University of Marrakesh, which enrolls nearly 63,000 students.
Bouhlal had met with Helfman and a few other faculty members last fall, in a meeting set up by the Institute for Global Studies and the office of U.S. Sen. Chris Coons.
He became an immediate friend to the University, Helfman said.
He really cared about us and our experience, she said, adding that
the ambassador personally contacted hotel owners and speakers to insure
that Helfman and her students were well taken care of and had an all
around great experience in Morocco.
Upon their return, he invited Helfman and her students to a lunch at
his Washington, D.C., home, where students informed him about their trip
and discussed everything from the lavish lunch spread to the artwork
and paintings that adorn his walls.
He was delightful in his interest in the students, said Helfman.
And we had a very different a better, far more interesting experience
in Morocco because he was involved.
Photos by Matthew Drexler
Originally published by UDaily
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