MINNEAPOLIS (May 9, 2012) — Registration is still possible for the 9th annual Union of North American Vietnamese Student Associations conference to be held July 26-29, 2012 at the DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington Minneapolis South, 7800 Normandale Boulevard.
Each year UNAVSA hosts a conference spanning the United States and Canada, inviting Vietnamese-interested youths and young professionals from all over to attend in order to benefit from workshops, philanthropy, regional entertainment, gala, networking, and much more. This year’s theme is “Buoc Qua”, which means “Step Through”. Together, we hope to bridge gaps within the Vietnamese community and unite with partners for a stronger voice.
The UNAVSA-9 staff has worked diligently to negotiate prices with the hotel to offer the best prices for our attendees, which will be published soon on the UNAVSA-9 registration website at http://conference.unavsa.org/registration.
Exclusive benefits to attendees who make hotel reservations through UNAVSA include: Complimentary continental breakfast every morning of attendee stay; complimentary Wi-Fi access in attendee rooms; and rooms for conference will be blocked off so that attendees will be closer together.
In addition to the above, the hotel offers the following amenities such as complimentary self-parking, complimentary shuttle service to airport, Mall of America, and light-rail service, large pool, 20-person whirlpool, and sauna, modern fitness center, and warm chocolate chip cookies.
Please visit http://www.doubletreehotelbloomington.com/ for more information. We look forward to having you room with us at our official conference facility at the wonderful DoubleTree by Hilton Bloomington Minneapolis South!
The UNAVSA-9 conference keynote speaker will be Bao Phi, a two-time Minnesota Grand Slam champion and a National Poetry Slam finalist.
Bao Phi has been a performance poet since 1991 and has appeared on HBO Presents Russell Simmons Def Poetry, and a poem of his appeared in the 2006 Best American Poetry anthology. His poems and essays are widely published in numerous publications including Screaming Monkeys and Spoken Word Revolution Redux. He has also released several CDs of his poetry, such as the recently sold-out Refugeography to his newest CD, The Nguyens EP.
He has performed in venues and schools across the country, from the Nuyorican Poets Café to the University of California, Berkeley. He was featured in the award-winning documentary feature film The Listening Project as an American listener who traveled the world to talk to everyday people about global issues and politics. He also returned to acting in 2008 with a feature role in Theatre Mu’s production of Q & A.
Bao Phi is also well-known for his community work, including published essays and blog posts for the Star Tribune’s website. He was the Coordinating Chair of the National APIA Spoken Word Poetry Summit, 2011 and was also awarded a 2012 Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative grant.
Another keynote speaker we have lined up is Lisa Thuy Duong Nguyen, executive director, Vietnamese Overseas Initiative for Conscience Empowerment. VOICE is a non-profit organization, providing a voice for the overseas Vietnamese community through education and advocacy for the protection of Vietnamese refugees, as well as addressing other issues confronting the conscience of our community.
Nguyen also goes by the name “Thuy Duong” on stage as she is one the MCs for Asia Entertainment, yes the very same one that brings you singers and songwriters like Truc Ho. However, that’s not all that Lisa does.
For the past three years, she has worked extensively on issues relating to refugee protection. In 2006, she volunteered at the Representative Office of the Vietnamese Community in Australia as a legal representative, Office Manager and advocate for stateless Vietnamese people remaining in the Philippines. She was the first executive director of VOICE, based in Washington DC and oversaw the resettlement of 275 stateless Vietnamese and dependants in the Philippines to Canada.
Nguyen is the founder and first Executive Director of Senhoa. For her community service work, she was awarded the Order of Australia Association Medal for Community Services. Most recently, she was awarded the Young Australian Vietnamese of the Year 2008.
UNAVSA is truly honored to have such an esteemed guests as keynote speakers for this year’s conference.
To register, please visit http://conference.unavsa.org/