Alumni Spotlight: Besart Lumi
From DU to Kosovo
Besart Lumi, a 2016 Korbel graduate of the Conflict Resolution and International Studies programs, visited his alma matter to share his post-graduate experiences with students at DU. Today, Lumi stands as a Senior Political Adviser to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kosovo. At a roundtable discussion this spring, Lumi described how he utilized and leveraged his conflict resolution skills into the world of diplomacy and within his personal endeavors in order to achieve this impressive position so soon after graduation. He spoke of his experience coming to Denver University on a foreign exchange program along with a Serbian National; the two were even housed together (learn more about his fellowship here).
Lumi shared many instances where his Conflict Resolution courses became an applicable experience in his everyday life and in his career, such as working to change the attitudes of many who are stuck in their ways. Lumi described the animosity Kosovo faces being a new state gaining independence in 2008, and the challenges of working to change the attitudes of many European Union members who still do not even recognize Kosovo. He described challenges closer to home, such as his own parents refusing to step foot into Serbia. These types of attitude change opportunities can be aided by applying Pettigrew's "Contact Theory," which describes the positive effects of intergroup contact that can occur only in situations marked by four key conditions which are: equal group status within the situation, common goals intergroup cooperation, support of authorities, law, or custom. Through his continued networking and hard work along with his studies and practical application of theories and hands-on experience from the Conflict Resolution at the University of Denver, Besart Lumi has prepared himself for understanding and implementing conflict resolution in growing his career path.
~Mayshaim Tahir, '18