12 Ed 002Executive Director: Ed Zastrow

   I am Ed, the ICFRC Executive Director. Previously, I was Executive Director, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Iowa for sixteen years.  Prior to RMHC, I was the owner/operator of Bushnell’s Turtle Restaurant and Catering for eighteen years and also restored the College Block Building in Iowa City.  
 Following graduation from the University of Iowa,  I worked for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control as an epidemiolgist and administrator in Chicago and Springfield, IL for six years.  My volunteer work includes service as President for twelve local, regional and state social service, library, hospital and foundation boards.  I have enjoyed travel to Japan, Mexico, Colombia, the Caribbean, Denmark and Sweden.


photo 1 (3)Intern: Rachel Maggi
Major: International Studies
     Hello! My name is Rachel and I’m a fifth year from Kohler, Wisconsin. I am currently pursuing a major in International Studies with a double focus in South Asian Studies and East Asian Studies, a certificate in Sustainability, and a minor in Global Health. I have studied French at UI and am currently studying Chinese and Hindi.
     My international experiences include a 3-week study abroad program in Udaipur, Rajasthan in northwest India in December 2014-January 2015, and a 4-week internship with The Swami Vivekananda Youth Mouth and Grassroots Research and Advocacy Movement in Mysore, Karnataka in southwest India in June 2015. I have also had brief visits in France, Mexico, the Bahamas, and Canada. I also had the privilege of attending Unite For Sight’s Global Health and Innovation Conference at Yale University in March of 2015 and April of 2017. In addition, I spoke at the Heartland Global Health Conference at Drake University in Des Moines in October 2015 about my internship with SVYM/GRAAM as a part of a pilot program for the new Development in a Global Context internship within the University of Iowa’s Global Health Studies Certificate Program. I would love to visit China or South East Asia in the near future.
     I am currently in the process of applying for a Fulbright award to do research on breast cancer prevention and treatment in Karnataka, India! Afterwards, I would like to apply to graduate school to receive a Masters in Public Health with a Global Health or Maternal, Newborn, and Child Health concentration. My ideal career would be a professor in Global Health.
Fidel Intern: Fidel Estrada
Major:  Geography
     Hey! I’m Fidel Estrada, and I was born and raised in Sioux City, IA. Currently, I am a fourth year student at the University of Iowa, and I will graduate in the Spring of 2018. I am majoring in Geography. My focus is Geographic Information Science.My interest in global affairs stems from my interest in different cultures and my desire to make a positive impact in the world. I like to meet people from diverse backgrounds and understand their perspectives and customs. In addition to this, I enjoy relaxing outdoors and spending time with family and friends.
     I have had the opportunity to travel to Mexico while visiting my family there. I am fluent in Spanish, and also currently learning German. I spent the summer of 2016 interning at Grüne Liga, an environmental NGO in Berlin. I hope to either study Geography or Urban and Regional Planning for my master’s degree. After that I’d like to work for a government agency, non-profit organization, or in any place I can help better people’s lives.


Intern: Jiahong Xu
Major: International Relations

I was born and raised in Changzhou, a city near the east coast of China. Though being a local of the city, I come from a culturally diverse family, which helped me see the world from different perspectives. Now I am in my fifth year studying international relations with a focus on international business and economics at the University of Iowa.

I have traveled to Europe and Australia in the past. I spent this past summer in Washington D.C. and worked with a non-profit organization aiming to foster cultural awareness among local youth. I am also part of Heart Workshop, a Chinese student organization promoting mental health awareness and well being of international students on campus.

I currently serve as the Chair of the International Student Advisory Board. The board serves as a channel to increase the communication between school administration and international student body. I am planning on volunteering in South East Asia and studying abroad in Morocco in the near future.

Daniel 2
Intern: Daniel Valentin
Majors: International Studies, Pre-Law

My name is Daniel, and I hail from Wheaton, Illinois. I’m pursuing degrees in International Studies and Arabic, as well as a certificate in Writing. I’m in my fourth year at the University of Iowa. An avid reader of world news, I enjoy devoting much of my time and effort into making sense of the world we live in, in hopes that someday I can help remedy the many issues plaguing humankind, to which I owe much to begin with.

During my career as an undergraduate, I have studied abroad in Morocco, and hope to go on to India and Germany if opportunity knocks on my door. I’m trilingual in English, Spanish and Modern Standard Arabic, and I’ve begun learning German. After I graduate, I hope to enter law school and later pursue work in administrative, international or human rights law.

Currently, I am involved in several student groups on campus. I serve as the president of Secular Students at Iowa, the chief justice among the seven justices of the Student Judicial Court in the University of Iowa Student Government, assistant director of the Human Rights Student Collective and I am a proud member and former secretary of the Association of Latinos Moving Ahead.

When I’m not studying or working as a student clerk for the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, I spend much of my time locked in intriguing conversations with my friends, writing freely in my journal and enjoying local musical and cultural events.

I earned my Eagle Scout rank on December 9th, 2013 and continue to help and contribute to the scouting community.

Deep down, I hope I may someday try my hand at being a voice actor. Nothing makes me happier than making people laugh and smile.



Intern: Ashley Chong
Major: International Studies

Hello all, my name is Ashley Chong and I’m presently a senior in International Studies with an Anthropology Minor and a Writing Certificate. My focus in International Studies is Post-Colonial/Diasporic Studies and East Asian Studies. My interest is in transnationalism; my final thesis and capstone projects will be about my experience as a Korean-American.

I grew up around the world due to my dad’s job in the Global Mining sector of Caterpillar. After being born in Peoria, IL (which is also the CAT headquarters), my family went to Singapore, where two years later my brother was born. Then we lived in the Philippines, Indonesia, and Singapore for nine years before landing back in Peoria. We lived in Peoria until my sophomore year, when we moved to Montreal, Canada. In other words, when people ask where I’m from, it gets complicated.

I hope to receive a Fulbright after I graduate to work on creative work (which will probably be a mix of poetry, prose, and perhaps music) in South Korea. After that, I hope to do an MFA in Literary Translation, as I have found the intersection and interplay of the languages I speak and study fascinating.

Beyond my studies, I am involved in music and in my church. I play the violin and am presently participation in Iowa’s chamber music program. At church, I help lead a small group and help with children’s choir. I also am a translator in Korean for the Translate Iowa Project. If I’m not doing any of the above, then I’m most likely on Spotify finding new music, writing, or spending time with friends.



Intern: Inhee Choi
Majors: Marketing Management, International Studies

Hello! My name is Inhee and I am from South Korea. I am a senior at the University of Iowa, double majoring in Marketing Management and International Studies with an emphasis in African Studies.
I have studied abroad in the Philippines and in China, and this made me interested in learning different languages and cultures. I have traveled to Europe, Southeast Asia, and East Asia. Since my International Studies major emphasis is in African Studies, I am planning to travel to Africa after my graduation.

I am currently involved in Circle K International, a student volunteer organization which provides services within the community. I have had a great experience by joining this organization, and learned valuable lessons including the fact that making others happy fulfils me. In addition to this, I am a member of the Multicultural Business Student Association, which helps me learn businesses all around the world. I am also learning Chinese, and my goal for the near future is to become fluent in Chinese.



laura-pic2Intern: Laura Schwager (middle)
Major: Interdepartmental Studies

My name is Laura Schwager and I am from the grand town of Iowa City. I am a senior at the University of Iowa and am pursuing my degree through the Interdepartmental Studies program with focuses in Environmental Sustainability, Social Entrepreneurship, and International Business. I recently received approval for a self-created curriculum in Design Anthropology, allowing me to pursue a multidisciplinary major not normally offered at the undergraduate level that combines my interest in studying the human condition with a passion for helping others through creative design strategies. I hope to apply my degree to a broad range of global issues, including those which I am most passionate about and currently involved in; animal welfare, mental health advocacy, environmental justice, and educational reform. I am currently interested in studying structural, technological, and system designs which optimize user health and life satisfaction while addressing environmental injustice.

I have considered my traveling experiences to be some of the most influential and enlightening of my life, and hope to continue traveling consistently. Studying Chinese business and culture through the University of Iowa study abroad program ignited my passion for international business and entrepreneurship. Opportunities that I am currently interested in include International Entrepreneurship and Culture in Belize and the India Winterim health or environmental programs. I hope to use entrepreneurial design strategy for helping micro businesses in developing countries to achieve sustainable autonomy.

In my free time you can find me in nature, cafés, or deep thought; on road trips, couches, or film sets. I enjoy recreational activities, freelance bartending, writing music, and pretending that I know what I’m doing with my life. I secretly want to be a professional explorer.



Intern: Riley Lewers
Majors: Economics, Political Science

Hi, my name is Riley, and I’m a sophomore from Iowa City, Iowa. I have always been interested in international politics, economics and world events, and how these seemingly distant forces affect people’s everyday lives. I plan on majoring in Economics and Political Science, and am exploring minors in Rhetoric and Statistics.

While in high school, I studied Spanish and spent several weeks in Spain improving my conversational skills and learning about Spanish culture. I hope to study abroad again during my time at the University of Iowa.

This fall I was involved with Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign as a campus fellow, and I am a member of UI Democrats.

In my limited free time, I love to read. I’m a dedicated reader of the New York Times Sunday Review and Op-Ed page, and The Atlantic.

Graduation is a long way off for me, so my plans are still rather vague. I know that I would like to continue my education by going to graduate school and/ or law school. I hope to someday work in civil rights or environmental law, and involve myself further in government and politics.


KyleIntern: Kyle Chapman
Major: Political Science

Greetings, my name is Kyle Chapman and I am a native of Des Moines, Iowa. I am currently a senior at the University of Iowa. My academic efforts are towards a degree in Political Science w. emphasis in Politics of Foreign Countries and a minor in Philosophy. In high school I studied French and am continuing my foreign language experience by studying Russian at the university.

My whole life I’ve had a strong interest in international events. This developed my love of NBC’s Nightly News at a young age. While at community college, I had the privilege of encountering a diverse array of individuals of whom I had the pleasure of meeting. Because of this, I developed many friendships with international students and learned invaluable about their cultures in Africa and South East Asia.

Although I’ve never been to a foreign country, it is a goal of mine to have a career in the international sphere. In the meantime, I plan on continuing my study of Russian during the summer of 2018 and hope to be a Peace Corps volunteer after I graduate.


SamuelIntern: Samuel Hoover
Major: Linguistics

I’m Samuel Hoover, a senior studying linguistics seeking a master’s degree in teaching English as a second language. I have a great passion for language and especially the science of language. I always keep an ear out for how people talk. Teaching is also an important part of my life and I love to introduce my friends to new concepts especially in the realm of linguistics. I work as a tutor for TRIO/SSS and have a great interest in helping students from lower income families succeed as much as their peers.

In my spare time I like to write, make music, and generally create. On the other side of that, I also spend a lot of time searching out new and hard to find media. I listen to an unreasonable amount of music, sometimes as many as six or seven new albums in a week. I love to collect all kinds of media and introduce friends to things that I know they’ll love.

After graduating I hope to find a good university somewhere in the world to teach English in areas with less resources, something becoming more and more necessary to be a part of our increasingly global world. However, a great dream of mine is to spend a year in Antarctica to experience the beauty and power of such a desolate place.


LucyIntern: Lucy Patterson
Major: French

Hello! My name is Lucy Patterson and I am from Cincinnati, Ohio. I moved to Iowa City in 2014 to start school at the University of Iowa, go hawks! I am currently a senior majoring in French, minoring in German, and working towards an International Business Certificate.

Outside of ICFRC I am on the executive board for the Iowa Optimist Chapter, try to go to the many classes at the Rec, Netflix my heart out, and try to stay as involved with current events as possible.

I’m planning on studying abroad in France during the spring semester of 2017. My hope for after graduation is to apply for a Teaching Assistantship Fulbright in Germany and eventually work in an international NGO.



ClaireIntern: Claire Boettcher
Major(s): Economics, Spanish 

Hi! My name is Claire Boettcher, and I was born in New Berlin, Wisconsin, but mostly raised in West Des Moines, Iowa. Currently, I am a senior at the University of Iowa, pursuing a double major in Economics and Spanish and a certificate in International Business. I am a board member on the Global Engagement Student Advisory Board at the Tippie College of Business and I am intern for the Institute for International Business, which is the international arm for the John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC).

This summer I have spent working as the Events and Logistics Intern for the Mandela Washington Fellowship, which was executed out of JPEC at the university. I had the opportunities to work with 25 young African leaders from 18 different countries, needless to say it was an amazing experience.

My interest in international affairs originates from growing up in a family that enjoys traveling, and has participated in study abroad. My family hosted an exchange student from Colombia, and I studied abroad in Ovalle, Chile my senior year of high school. Both of these experiences fostered an interest and commitment to become involved with international affairs. I also intend to study abroad in Seville, Spain next semester.

After graduation I am looking into a few options: the Fulbright scholarship, the Peace Corps, teaching English abroad, or graduate school. Some of my interests outside of university and work include rock climbing, jogging, traveling, and volunteering.