South Asian Conference Planning Meeting Friday, September 9th, 2005 by kpn40237


									                      2nd South Asian Conference Planning Meeting
                               Friday, September 9th, 2005
                              25 West 43rd Street, 18th Floor
                                  New York, NY 10036

In attendance: Zeeshan Suhail, Parmatma Saran, Vinit Parmar, Rafia Hamid, Manaw
Roy, Vivian Gupta, Manu Bhagavan, Thomas Tam, Shashi Kanna, and Maggie Fung.

Prof. Parmatma Saran began the meeting by going over the tentative program for the
South Asian Conference. The whole conference will start approximately around 8:45 am
and it would end around 5:00 pm. The discussion sessions should be about an hour and
50 minutes long. The first session would start at 12:45 pm and it should end at 1:30 pm. It
would focus on women and human rights issues. The second session would focus on
leadership and then there will be a lunch break. The third session will focus on business
and the last session will be for the tsunami funding. In regard of the food organization,
Prof. Saran asked Dr. Tam whether the food will be the same as the last conference. Dr.
Tam stated that it would be a good idea since it was convenient and economical. Prof.
Vinit Parmar pointed out the obstacle of the food placement in the back of the conference
room because it may disturb the speakers. Prof. Parmar asked about the possibility of
placing the food in another room. Dr. Tam responded that it can be probable.

Prof. Parmar was unable to set up the blackboard system due to technological difficulties.
Conference committee will continue to keep in touch through emails. In this second
planning meeting, new members joined us with their participation. Ms. Vivian Gupta
introduced herself. She was a member of the Girl Scouts of Nassau County and Prof.
Manawendra Roy is a professor at Borough of Community College.

The South Asian Conference may consist of 5 panels with three people in each panel. Dr.
Tam suggested that panelists should prepare the title of their sessions, a short description
of the panel and the biographies of the speakers. The last session of the conference
which would focus on the tsunami will have Mr. Sirisena and Prof. Roy’s assistance.
Prof. Roy stated that there are videos about the tsunami that can be utilized for the talk.
Dr. Tam stated that a more concrete idea needs to be developed. He mentioned about the
development of the tsunami taskforce and the focus on the mental health aspect of the
tsunami. The goal was to bring mental health related members to go to South Asia to
reach out to those in need; to accumulate the social work as well as psychology faculties
to form more of a taskforce. Prof. Saran mentioned that more sensitivity should be

The women and human rights panel in which Prof. Manu Bhagavan will coordinate, may
be assisted by the Human Rights department in Hunter. Prof. Bhagavan may also able to
find two people from South Asia to participate in the conference. An honorarium may be
given and a $1000 may be obtained as donation. However, everything is still in process;
therefore, nothing is guaranteed yet. Prof. Bhagavan also suggested the opportunity for
those who participated on the conference to attend to an after conference party.
The suggested keynote speaker will be Wellington Chen. Prof. Bhagavan mentioned a
few possible speakers from the Saki and Taxi Union. Another possible speaker may be a
writer but this may take away others from the other panels.

Topics about rape and violence cases were brought up and Prof. Bhagavan stated that
such discussions should not focus only on one community or nation, so that
understandings of such groups or places, given the limited time and space we have, are
not skewed with limited information. Prof. Saran would desire a balance in the
conference. Significant issues would require a lot of time and concentration. This
conference would be more general. Ms. Rafia Hamid stated that her main focus was on
psychology but this topic was not raised in the program. Mr. Zeeshan Suhail mentioned
the issue of identity. Prof. Bhagavan brought up the idea of having poster sessions as a
way to open up possibilities and increase audience participation as well. It would be like
a CUNY wide competition. Dr. Tam emphasized that time would be an obstacle. There
may not be enough time. A year ahead of time would be needed in order for a
competition to be developed. More people collaborating would be better. Prof. Parmar
stated that issue of quality in the works submitted. However, Dr. Tam stated that ideas
such as the psychological aspects in certain issues and poster sessions may be
incorporated for the next following South Asian conference.

Issues in regard of debates were also brought to attention. Prof. Roy stated that facilitator
will be needed and it would be the responsibility of the panelist to make sure everything
runs smoothly. Dr. Tam emphasized that it may be necessary to inform the security to be
aware of certain situations.

Prof. Bhagavan stated that the flyer needs to be edited because the objective and the title
do not complement. Some of the possible topics that were brought up include:
   1. Hot topics for the South Asian community
   2. Issues concerning the South Asian community
   3. Points of connection: South Asian communities and Diaspora
   4. The many faces/ facets of South Asians (in the U.S.)

Suggestions about the flyers should be sent to Maggie Fung at
Prof. Parmar suggested the involvement of other participants. Conference committee
may notify others to send pictures they would like to incorporate in the flyer.

The next planning meeting has been scheduled to take place on Friday, October 28th,
2005, at 4:00 pm. Dr. Tam wanted committee members to try to work on clarifying what
the whole theme of the conference is, to have the panel title, the biography of
participants; the information would allow people to have expectations of the conference.
Prof. Saran also focused on the requirement of sponsorships.

Respectfully submitted,
Maggie Fung
College Assistant
            Tentative Program For South Asian Conference

                                     Friday, March 17, 2006
                                    Time: 9:00 AM- 5:00 PM
                          Baruch College - Newman Conference Center
                                  151 E. 25th Street, Room 750
                          between Lexington & 3rd Avenues, Manhattan

8:30---9am                      Breakfast& Registration

9:00---9:15am                   Greetings

9:15---10:15am                  Session I: Women & Human Rights

(10 minutes discussion)             Bhagavan & Prabhu

Break 10:15---10:30am

10:30---12:45pm                 Session II: Leadership Panel

(75 minutes session,                     Saran

20 minutes for discussion)

12:45---2pm                     Lunch

                                Suggested speaker—Trustee Chen (talk at 1:30)

           Suggested Topic: Reaching out and forming broader coalition of Asian Groups

2:00---3pm                      Session III: on Business

(10 minutes for discussion)             Lakshminarayan, Hamid, Sukhdeo

3:00---4pm                      Session IV: on Tsunami

(10 minutes for discussion)             Tam, Sirisena, Cherukupalli, vote of thank.

4:00---5pm                      Wine & Cheese ?

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