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 demonstrated. 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 email@example.com. 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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