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St. Ambrose creates first middle east institute

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St. Ambrose University announced today that it will expand its curriculum to create a Middle East Institute, the first of its kind in Iowa.

Director of International Education, Ryan Dye, said the Middle East Institute will be more than just a class.

"We are going to be a public forum for dialogue about key issues involving the middle east," Dye said. "If you watch the news or read the newspaper, everyday the headline stories are about challenges in the middle east whether it's Syria or Iran or the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to name just a few."

The Middle East Institute will invite scholars and experts to talk about the situation and issues in the region and try to shed light on a complicated topic.

The first event is scheduled for April 10 at 7 p.m. when former Iowa congressman Jim Leach will discuss America's relationship with the middle east. The event is free and open to the public.