IAAB's Campus Action Network (I-CAN) has been active this semester working to build coalitions across the University of California campuses in support of the SWANA campaign. In IAAB's I-CAN Make it Right Campaign, Iranian American students can partake in getting campuses to recognize the SWANA category. To read more about what SWANA is, please click here.
Students at the University of California, Berkeley were the first of the UC campuses to pass a bill in support of adding a Southwest Asian/North African check-box to the UC application. Since the passage of this bill at UC Berkeley, the University of California Student Association (UCSA), as well as the UC San Diego, UC Irvine and UCLA campuses have all passed bills in support of this initiative. Passage of these bills are a huge victory for the SWANA campaign because it shows consensus, demand and necessity for change. While approval for the application change awaits deliberation from the University of California Office of the President (UCOP), several individuals are actively advocating for the SWANA community, including Vice President of UCOP, Judy Sakaki. The fate of the 2013-2013 UC application should be released next month.
IAAB has partnered with attorney Samira Afzali, a specialist in Iran-US sanctions, to create an awareness building campaign about the impact of sanctions on Iranian Americans and Iranian Nationals.
Below is an excerpt from a report by Samira Afzali, Esq., on the Iran-US Sanctions. You can read the full report, along with common questions about the sanctions, here.
In recent years, the US government has intensified its sanctions programs against Iran and increased enforcement of its regulations concerning financial transactions between the US and Iran. The enforcement of the economic sanctions regime rests with the US Department of Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”).
Since 2010, I have received first hand accounts from Iranian Americans with US citizenship and Iranian nationals in the US on their myriad problems with ordinary financial activities due to OFAC regulations. Many Iranian Americans and Iranian nationals have reported bank accounts being blocked or closed by banks claiming the individual has violated OFAC regulations. Others have reported issues with their PayPal accounts or other e-commerce accounts when they travel to Iran. Even an innocuous action such as checking their account from Iran has led financial institutions to block an Iranian’s account.
In some cases, Iranian Americans with US citizenship are able to eventually resolve their problems; whereas, some Iranian nationals have reported an indefinite freeze on their accounts despite no wrongdoing. The US-Iran sanctions regime, which was intended to target the Iranian regime and its affiliates, is having serious ramifications for Iranian Americans and Iranian nationals who engage in ordinary financial activities. Some students have been forced to abandon their studies in the US and return to Iran. Some Iranian Americans have lost access to their checking and savings accounts, and are unable to seek legal counsel when a local attorney discovers that the US-Iran sanctions are the source of the problem.
Click here to read more and please stay tuned as this campaign expands to learn about ways you can get involved.
IAAB tries it's very best to provide as many tuition stipend opportunities for students to attend Camp Javan and Camp Ayandeh. This year, we have three different opportunites to get a tuition stipend to attend:
1) Students can win tuition stipends to attend Camp Ayandeh by applying for the IAAB High School Essay Contest. Prizes include:
1st place: full-tuition to Camp Ayandeh
2nd place: half-tuition to Camp Ayandeh
3rd place: $200 tuition stipend for Camp Ayandeh
Please click here to see the prompts and how you can apply.
2) Exceptional Camp Javan and Camp Ayandeh participants can apply as HAND Junior Fellows, a premiere fellowship opportunity supplementing both programs.
3) Students can also apply for the Tuition Stipend Application for Camps Javan and Ayandeh. Please click here to learn more.
IAAB is pleased to announce that DC-based comedian, Elahe Izadi, and hip hop artist, Mana, will both perform at IAAB's 10th Anniversary Party at Busboys and Poets (14th St) on Thursday, April 25th at 7:30pm.
Elahe Izadi is a Washington, D.C.-based stand-up comic. She was born in D.C and grew up in rural Maryland as the daughter of Iranian immigrants who own an Italian restaurant. Elahe has performed at the Women in Comedy Festival, State Theatre and DC Improv Lounge. She's also a national political reporter. (www.elaheizadi.com // @ElaheIzadi)
Mana is an Iranian American MC. She was born in the US, raised in Iran, and traveled throughout the world. She raps in English and in Farsi. She is most compared to artists like M.I.A, Lauryn Hill, and Nas. Her music is upbeat, cut-throat, and melodic. She has shared the stage with Raekwon, Ghostface Killah, Biz Markie, and many more.
Her music is inspiring people to reach their goals and to keep a positive attitude. Her music talks about issues that the media ignores and gives voice to those who aren’t but need to be heard. Her style is unique and refreshing in a period where passion is rare. Mana is guaranteed to hit the heart.
Join us: Thurs, April 25th @ 7:30pm @ Busboys and Poets (14th St).
IAAB Turns 10 and we'd love for you to join us in this momentous celebration! We'll be celebrating next Thursday, April 25, 2013 at Busboys and Poets in Washington, DC (14th and V St NW) from 7:30 pm - 11:30 pm.
Performances will include DC's own hip hop artist Mana IsMe, as well as comedian NAME, classical Iranian music, vocalist performances, spoken word poetry, hip-hop. You can't beat this line up!
IAAB staff members, volunteers, project participants, and members of the DC community will come together to celebrate ten years of cutting-edge programming and community building. Come see old friends, meet new ones, and learn more about IAAB’s exciting work. Enjoy performances from members of the IAAB community at IAAB’s first ever community open mic! Suggested Donation: $15
Join the Facebook Event page for updates!
We're putting together a quick, fun video to commemorate the day, so utilize whatever device you're reading this from and take three minutes to answer the following questions on video:
2. What is the first word that comes to mind when you think of IAAB? Why?
Presenting IAAB's 10 by 10 campaign! Help us celebrate our 10th birthday by spreading the word about our Facebook page to help us reach 10,000 likes by the end of 2013. What better way to celebrate our birthday than to DOUBLE our likes and get more people involved in our awesome programs! SHARE, TWEET, SPREAD THE WORD. Read, set, go!
IAAB, in collaboration with directors of Persian language schools, is pleased to present the unique Persian Language Educators' Symposium from May 25-May 26, 2013 in New York City.
This closed symposium will gather the directors and teachers of Persian language heritage schools (pre-school to high school) across the United States in order to learn from each other's best practices and to discuss challenges such as recruitment and retention rates, providing quality texts for learning, and creating sustainable and engaging second-language acquisition curricula.
As our community grows in the United States, IAAB recognizes the importance of fostering and supporting Persian language schools to meet the needs of the younger generation.
Please help spread the news about this unique gathering of educators in our community.
To read more about this symposium and it's goals, please click here.
For those interested in attending this symposium, please register here.
Hear about the impact that IAAB’s Summer Leadership Institute had on Nima, a recent immigrant from Iran, who joined us last year. Don’t miss out on this experience of a lifetime if you are an Iranian American youth. Apply today!
Iranians studying abroad face new hurdles when attempting to access financial institutions – simple acts like opening a bank account are becoming virtually impossible. American and European banks and companies also struggle with new policies as was evident with this summer’s Apple controversy.
The growing Iranian brain drain to the United States combined with increased sanctions means a population of young Iranians were financially cut off in the last year. These students face employment and aid restrictions due to their immigration status. Iranian American university student groups can play a critical role in supporting and advocating on behalf of their Iranian classmates. I-CAN participating groups will:
- Assist Iranian classmates facing harsh financial constraints through emotional support and advocacy
- Raise awareness on this issue through panels, speakers, discussions and petitions
- Contact school officials and urge student bank unions and campus banks to become accessible through direct action and student mobilization
To learn more about and/or join the I-CAN Make it Right campaign, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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