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University of Iowa News Release

Oct. 17, 2005

UI College of Nursing Dean Dreher Named U.N. Day Chair

Melanie Dreher, Ph.D. (left), the Kelting Dean of the University of Iowa College of Nursing, has been appointed by Iowa Gov. Tom Vilsack as chair of United Nations Day 2005 for the State of Iowa. Events will be in Des Moines Tuesday, Oct. 18 and Wednesday, Oct. 19. 

The theme for this year's observance by the Iowa United Nations Association is "Child Health and Survival: the Millennium Goals and the Most Vulnerable." The event also marks the 60th anniversary of the United Nations.

Public hearings will be on the afternoon of Oct. 18 at the Des Moines Botanical Center. Following a reception and dinner, Dreher will moderate a panel discussion on the role of the United Nations regarding poverty, hunger and health.

Day two of the proceedings will feature an address by Dreher to the Iowa United Nations Association youth symposium at the State Capitol building. Her message will center on how hunger, poverty and women's health issues affect the world's child mortality rate, and the specific steps U.N. agencies have taken to curb the crisis. 

Dreher was tapped to chair the event due to her distinguished career as an academic administrator. As a nurse and an anthropologist, Dreher has conducted extensive research on the health and welfare of children, women and working men in the Caribbean. She has examined culture as an organizing value in nursing education and practice.

"As a nurse activist, representing College of Nursing leaders who strive to influence health care delivery and public policymaking, I am honored to play a role in recognizing the U.N.'s worldwide relief measures," Dreher said. "The health and welfare of infants and children in developing countries is a vitally important issue that deserves our attention and energies."

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa College of Nursing, 101 Nursing Building, Iowa City, Iowa 52242

MEDIA CONTACT: Michele Francis, 319-335-8960,