Alumni Spotlight: Clair Kuriakose

Clair Kuriakoc_kuriakosese, Distinguished Sister Euphoria of Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority, Incorporated. founded Shingari’s School of Rhythm on 2008 after she graduated form Saint John’s University.  Clair was captain of the SJU Bollywood dance team, Raaz and wanted to continue her passion in Indian Bollywood dance after her studies.  After she moved back to Texas, she started she started Shigari’s School of Rhythm in hopes to share her passion for dance for the younger generation. The school now has many locations nationwide including Houston, Dallas, Chicago, San Francisco and Los Angeles! In 2013 Clair started a new online branch to the school in hopes to spread Bollywood dance worldwide.  The online branch, www.bollywoodtrainer.com has now over 1000 users world wide. Shingari’s school of rhythm in association with bollywoodtrainer.com has won many awards for choreography and performance.  They have also had many opportunities to perform at live concerts including Jay Sean, Sonu Nigam, and AR Rahamnan. Recently Bollywoodtrainer.com has opened for the NBA prime time  game Dallas Mavericks vs Chicagobulls! Bollywoodtrainer.com wishes to continue to spread the Indian culture in 2014.

NAPA Partners with NAAPIMHA and Active Minds for AAPI Mental Health Awareness

The National Asian Pacific Islander American Panhellenic Association (NAPA) and the National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association (NAAPIMHA) and Active Minds are excited to announce a new partnership to bring mental health education and awareness to Asian and Asian-American students on college campuses. Through the Friends DO Make a Difference initiative, collegiate chapters of NAPA will have access to programming and resources to promote mental health, reduce stigma, and encourage help-seeking in a community that may face cultural and language barriers when accessing treatment.

“We identified that mental health is a significant and unaddressed issue for many of our member organizations,” said Brian Gee, Executive Chair of NAPA. “We are excited to partner with two prominent organizations in the field of mental health to equip the collegiate leaders we represent with skills and knowledge needed to recognize and refer peers who might be struggling.”

“Research has shown that Asian students on campus with mental health problems are significantly less likely to be receiving treatment than their peers in other racial/ethnic groups,” said Sara Abelson, Senior Director of Programs at Active Minds. The Friends DO Make A Difference initiative aims to have NAPA members start a series of dialogues and activities on a range of topics, recognizing that mental health is a part of their everyday lives. NAPA chapters participating in the Friends DO Make a Difference initiative will train chapter officers and advisors to identify signs and symptoms of mental health concerns and host events with their membership to connect them to mental health resources on campus. Upon completion of mental health training and programming, chapters will be recognized with a Friends DO Make a Difference Seal of Distinction.

“The Friends campaign was designed to raise awareness of mental health among Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander students. The hope is to make campuses a safe place to talk about key issues as students learn how to support each other. We are excited to work closely with NAPA and Active Minds to develop student leaders who will advocate on behalf of mental health,” said DJ Ida, Executive Director of NAAPIMHA. “By working with the next generation of leaders, we hope to reduce stigma and open positive dialogue about mental health for years to come.”

“We are excited to partner with NAPA and NAAPIMHA to reach an important and often underserved community of students when it comes to mental health awareness,” said Sara Abelson, Senior Director of Programs at Active Minds. The Friends DO Make a Difference initiative will support Active Minds’ mission to empower students to speak openly about mental health in order to educate others and encourage help seeking.
About the National Asian Pacific Islander American Panhellenic Association

The National Asian Pacific Islander American Panhellenic Association (NAPA) is an association of collegiate fraternities and sororities with an interest in culture and serving the APIA community. The organization serves to advocate the needs of its member organizations and provides a forum to share ideas and resources within its members. NAPA supports the development of positive relations through open communication with interfraternal partners to enrich the fraternal experience. Learn more at www.napa-online.org.

About the National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association

The National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association (NAAPIMHA) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. NAAPIMHA’s mission is to promote the mental health and well being of the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. Since its founding, NAAPIMHA strives to raise awareness of the role of mental health in an individual’s health and well-being, especially in Asian American Pacific Islander communities throughout the country. For more information visit: www.naapimha.org.

About Active Minds, Inc.

Active Minds is the young adult voice in mental health advocacy. By supporting a rapidly growing network of hundreds of student-led chapters at colleges and universities, Active Minds empowers students to speak openly about mental health in order to educate others and encourage help-seeking.  Active Minds is a national nonprofit headquartered in Washington D.C. Follow us on Twitter @Active_Minds. For more information visit: www.ActiveMinds.org.

 

Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority, Inc. joins NAPA

The National APIA Panhellenic Association (NAPA) is pleased to announce that Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority, Inc. has joined the Association as its 13th member organization. The sorority was approved for membership in November and was formally seated at the Association’s annual meeting on December 7th, 2013.

Sigma Sigma Rho was established in December 1998 and currently has established chapters across the country. Its national philanthropy is the awareness and prevention of domestic violence.

Kiran Wadhwa, Sigma Sigma Rho’s National President, commented, “We highly value and respect NAPA’s standards and significance in the Greek world. Sigma Sigma Rho takes much pride in being able to work alongside other NAPA organizations to give back to the community and make a difference in our collective future.”

NAPA Executive Chair Brian Gee welcomed Sigma Sigma Rho stating, “The addition of Sigma Sigma Rho Sorority to the Association is evidence of the incredible growth of the cultural greek movement and the critical role our organizations play in the lives of our members and in the communities which we serve. Their membership reinforces the diverse needs and interests of college women. Fraternities and Sororities are the largest leadership development organizations on colleges across the country and we look forward to Sigma Sigma Rho’s collaboration with our member organizations in our effort to advance the fraternal movement.”

NAPA was founded in 2005. NAPA serves to advocate the needs of its member organizations and provide a forum to share ideas and resources within its members. NAPA supports the development of positive relations through open communication with interfraternal partners to enrich the fraternal experience.

Alumni Spotlight: Jeanette Moy

j_lee

Jeanette Moy, a member of Sigma Psi Zeta Sorority, Inc. currently serves as the Chief Strategy Officer and Vice President for Strategic Planning for the Brooklyn Public Library.

Jeanette executes the Brooklyn Public Library’s plan to reorganize the nation’s fifth largest public library to fit more comprehensively into our increasingly digital society. It is by no means an easy feat.  However, Jeanette seems to effortlessly balance the responsibilities of her job, her children, and commitment to improving Greek, community, and nonprofit organizations that enrich culture of various communities.  In addition to her endeavors at the Brooklyn Public Library, Jeanette played a key role in utilizing digital tools to provide the citizens of New York City better access to information and services across agencies as a senior policy advisor in Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s office of operations.

Inspirational from the onset of her career as a community builder, in 2004, Jeanette helped lead the campaign between twelve multicultural Greek organizations to engage the Asian Pacific Islander American (APIA) youth to vote.  After successfully registering 8,000 people to participate in the 2004 electoral process, as well as raising money for the Asian Tsunami campaign, the group was the beginning of what eventually became the National Asian Pacific Islander American Panhellenic Association (NAPA).

Graduate of the University of Rochester, member of Sigma Psi Zeta Sorority, Inc., a founding member of NAPA, a founding board member of APIAVote, and former Organization of Chinese Americans (OCA) college leadership trainer, Jeanette Moy is truly a driven leader who has made and continues to make a tremendous difference in the world around her.