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(PDF) (DOC) (JPG)November 13, 2012

(MAHWAH, NJ)- Uzbek Ambassador to the United Nations Murad Askarov will visit Ramapo College on Thursday, November 15. He will give a lecture on the “Future Water Use, Sustainable Development and the Aral Sea Crisis: an Uzbek Perspective” from11:30 a.m. to  1 p.m. in Friends Hall (SC-219). Discussion will be offered by Professor and Director of the Institute for Environmental Studies Michael Edelstein and Adjunct Professor of Environmental Studies Astrid Cerny. Following the lecture, a reception will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. in Friends Hall.

Ambassador Askarov earned his Doctorate in political science and a Masters degree in international relations from the University of World Economy and Diplomacy in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. After holding various posts for 12 years, Askarov became the Uzbekistan Ambassador to the UN in 2009.

Uzbekistan, which was formerly part of the Soviet Union, is the most populated nation in Central Asia. While it looks to create a future based upon sustainable development, the nation and region face significant obstacles relating to water and climate change and the legacy of decision making from the Soviet era. Most significant of these legacy issues is the Aral Sea disaster, involving the virtual disappearance of the Earth’s fourth largest inland body of water, often described as the Earth’s worst ecological disaster to date. Significant continuing desertification and salinization in the nation and region threaten health, water quality, agricultural productivity, as well as the cultural and architectural legacy.

Moreover, as a double land-locked country where water is derived entirely from two rivers controlled by upland nations, Uzbekistan faces a geo-political challenge that can result either in peace and prosperity or scarcity and conflict.
The visit stems from the College’s ongoing relationship with Uzbekistan. Under Professor Edelstein, the college hosted Dr. Abror Gavaev, a Fulbright Visiting Scholar from Uzbekistan, and completed a research exchange program on the Aral Sea funded by the Trust for Mutual Understanding. With Drs. Cerny and Gadaev, Edelstein has edited a book on the Aral disaster, which is due out this month, “Disaster by Design: the Aral Sea and Its Lessons for Sustainability.”

Among campus groups co-sponsoring the Ambassador’s visit are the Masters in Sustainability Studies, the Roukema Center for International Education, the Culture Club, the Model UN and One-Step (the Sustainability Club).

Visitor’s from off campus are welcome and should plan to get a parking pass at the security booth at the campus’ north entrance. For more information please contact Professor Mike Edelstein at medelste@ramapo.edu.

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Ramapo College of New Jersey is the state’s premier public liberal arts college and is committed to academic excellence through interdisciplinary and experiential learning, and international and intercultural understanding. The College is ranked #1 among New Jersey public institutions by College Choice, has been named one of the 50 Most Beautiful College Campuses in America by CondeNast Traveler, and is recognized as a top college by U.S. News & World Report, Kiplinger’s, Princeton Review and Money magazine, among others. Ramapo College is also distinguished as a Career Development College of Distinction by CollegesofDistinction.com, boasts the best campus housing in New Jersey on Niche.com, and is designated a “Military Friendly College” in Victoria Media’s Guide to Military Friendly Schools.

Established in 1969, Ramapo College offers bachelor’s degrees in the arts, business, data science, humanities, social sciences and the sciences, as well as in professional studies, which include business, education, nursing and social work. In addition, the College offers courses leading to teacher certification at the elementary and secondary levels, and offers graduate programs leading to master’s degrees in Accounting, Business Administration, Creative Music Technology, Data Science, Educational Technology, Educational Leadership, Nursing, Social Work and Special Education, as well as a post-master’s Doctor of Nursing Practice.

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