The Community Engagement Exchange (CEE) Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, is designed to enable civil society leaders, to harness the power of networks, relationships, and information for the public good, including on issues related to women and gender, resilience and sustainable development, and youth engagement. A core piece of the program is a 3-month practicum experience at a U.S.-based organization. NGCP is thrilled to host Gulan Gawdan from Kurdistan Region of Iraq. NGCP's goal is to learn from Gulan's experiences and to support her by providing resources to design and implement equity-focused programming upon her return home.
Gulan serves as Library Director at The American University of Kurdistan (AUK) and has a bachelor’s degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the University of Duhok. She served in different positions at AUK, including (Executive Assistant and Manager of Protocol) for the Presidential Office, Systems Librarian, and American International Consortium of Academic Libraries (AMICAL) Representative for AUK. She has a demonstrated history of working in the higher education industry.
Gulan is committed to supporting empowerment opportunities for young Kurds and Iraqis in STEM, in her words:
"I believe that by becoming a strong female leader empowered by quality academic education, I can inspire young girls and contribute to positive changes in my country. Despite the difficult security situation in my country and certain gender restrictions prevailing in my culture, I focus my work on how to connect young with education and employment opportunities in the engineering and technology fields, dynamic sectors in my country in need of qualified labor.”
Gulan considers herself a dynamic individual who enjoys a variety of pursuits. She has a tremendous record of community involvement, encapsulated by her roles as a community volunteer with Tearfund, Unleash Innovation Lab (Talent in 2018, Program Evaluator in 2019 and Ambassador of Diversity for Iraq in 2019, and MENA Ambassador since 2020), and researcher at Middle East Theater. Gulan’s research interests include quality education in ICT fields and STEM jobs. She is an advocate for the United nation’s sustainable development goals (SDGs#4) Quality Education.
NGCP looks forward to working with and learning from Gulan this fall.