Tuesday, February 22, 2005, 07:21 AMThe University of Nebraska at Omaha student chapter of Americans for Informed Democracy (UNO AID) was founded in January 2005 by Brian Wiese. The purpose of UNO AID is to carry on the mission of the national level Americans for Informed Democracy (AID) which is to promote global awareness and international cooperation, but locally within the community by working with other related organizations to coordinate town hall meetings to discuss issues of global imprtance.
Brian Wiese founded UNO AID in response to his Fall 2004 semester study abroad, partially funded by the Gilman International Scholarship Program, at Agder University College in Kristiansand, Norway. Feeling a sense of urgency to help bridge the tensions of the Bush administrations then current standing political divide between the U.S. and Europe, and even deeply polarized political divide among the parties at home, he attended AID's "Bring the World Home" conference December 9, 2004 in Berlin, Germany. After sharing cultural experiences with other Americans abroad and international students there, as well as taking in discussions on a wide-range of global and trans-atlantic issues with distinguished panelists, he took up the challenge to start an AID chapter in his local city and state.
The purpose of this local AID chapter then is to bring the international discussions back home into the heartland of the U.S., to inform Americans about this issues of global concern which receive little local attention, help to develop more globalist leaders, strengthen democracy and the political process by encouraging civic activity, and to take in understandings and appreciations of different cultures though study abroad and related educational activities. "The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." - Saint Augustine
Other contributing founders of UNO AID:
Dr. Jonathan Benjamin-Alvarado
Dr. Jody Neathery-Castro
Dr. Pamela Owens
April Bishop, Goodrich Student Organization President
Wiese is a Gilman Scholar, Goodrich Scholar, and Eagle Scout who graduated from the College of IS&T in May 2005 with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and minor in Management of Information Systems.