Press Release, January 15, 2015

Pythagoras Mundus: Visit to Italy by the Director General of the Ministry of Education of Iraqi Kurdistan.

The development path for cooperation between Italy and Kurdistan continues.
The visit of Prof. AHMED SEMAYEL RAHMAN – Director General of the Ministry of Education of Iraqi Kurdistan and envoy of the Minister – a guest of IsCaPI in Calabria between January 12 and 15 to learn about and strengthen the experience of 40 Kurdish students participating in the Pythagoras Mundus Program was a great success.
The guest was accompanied by Prof. YOUSIF ABDULLAH MUSTAFA, Head of the Ministry’s Technical Education Department. The result of collaboration with the Region of Calabria, the regional school office, the Province of Cosenza and the active contribution of the municipalities and schools of Sant’Agata d’Esaro, Scigliano and Diamante, the Pitagora Mundus Program, promoted by IsCaPI-Calabrese Institute of International Policies-has now allowed foreign students, for more than three years, to attend technical and vocational schools in Calabria and study the Italian language.
At the various appointments, Mayors RAFFAELE PANE in Scigliano and LUCA BRANDA in Sant’Agata d’Esaro and Headmistress CONCETTA SMERIGLIO at the Diamante boarding school did the honors, as hosts of those public entities that have supported the international cooperation and training activities of the Pythagoras Mundus Program from the very first moment.
Present at the meetings, of course, were Headmistress FERNANDA PETRISANO of the Scigliano IPA, as well as several Public Authorities including the Provost of the Province of Cosenza, and students accompanied by their teachers. The spirit of the initiative was to make the Kurdish children’s host territory and the school entrusted with their education known as part of a long-term strategic cooperation between Italy and Iraqi Kurdistan and to strengthen the bonds of friendship and cooperation between the cultures and economies of the territories involved.
Afterwards, the guests, accompanied by the students were invited to the Schools’ facilities where various technical practical educational activities could be shown. Interesting in Sant’Agata d’Esaro was the visit led by Mayor Branda to local woodworking facilities; during the meetings, the protagonists agreed on the opportunity of a possible business cooperation between Italy and Kurdistan that could take advantage of the possibility of involving Kurdish students currently engaged in local schooling courses addressed precisely on woodworking.
In Scigliano, on the other hand, the presence of the distinguished guests was the occasion for the presentation of some awards to the Italian and Kurdish students of the classes engaged on various PON projects curated by the School and, finally, for the inauguration of the first “Club Pitagora” , a recreational area equipped at the former local boarding school and made available to the people of Scigliano and which will serve as a center of aggregation and cultural integration.
The Iraqi students were welcomed by the Calabrian community in a school and cultural integration course specially designed to give an international scope to social and land development policies. The main goal of the project is to make Calabria a Mediterranean and international training area, so as to corroborate the global development policies of the Calabria Region.