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Celebrate! Part 1
Start Date: 3/10/2013Start Time: 8:00 AM
End Date: 3/30/2013End Time: 5:00 PM

Event Description:
The Silicon Valley East African Diaspora Project (SVEADP) announces its opening ceremony for the first of two exhibits: Celebrate!, an exhibit focused on Silicon Valley’s East African immigrants and their contributions to the economic, cultural, religious, and intellectual growth in our region. Celebrate! Part 1, which opens March 10, 2013 at 2 p.m., at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, features six cases of cultural memorabilia from members of Silicon Valley’s East African communities and 30 selected photographs by SJSU Professor of Photojournalism, Dr. D. Michael Cheers. In addition to the photograph and cultural memorabilia exhibits, the opening ceremony includes music, dance, ethnic food, and speakers.

Many recent immigrants from East Africa know first-hand what it means to be excluded from governance and they have a great appreciation for aspects of our democracy that we hold dear but often take for granted. The exhibit captures their experiences and meanings of democracy as one of its core components. The SVEADP project and its exhibits provide an opportunity for American youth and adults to reflect on their privilege as they see the photographs, read excerpts from immigrant narratives, and view cultural memorabilia that stir memories for East Africans who arrived in California as a result of educational and employment opportunities, national and global power transitions, and displacements that separated families and decimated many ethnic groups and clans.

The Silicon Valley East African Diaspora Project (SVEADP) is funded by a small grant from Cal Humanities. Dr. Ruth P. Wilson, Chair of African-American Studies at SJSU, is the project director. Dr. Jackie Copeland-Carson, Dr. Ahmed Dirie and Ms. Iris Jerke are SVEADP Humanities Advisors.

A second exhibit, Celebrate! Part 2 will open at the King Library in August 2013, and will include a larger collection of photographs and memorabilia. SVEADP’s community collaborators include the African Women’s Development Fund USA, the Bay Area Somali Association, the Eritrean Community and Cultural Development Center of San Jose, The Eritrean Community Center of Santa Clara, Ethiopian Community Services, Inc, and other East African organizations.

Visit to access to more information about SVEADP.
Location Information:
SJSU Main Campus - King Library
Contact Information:
Name: Ruth Wilson
Phone: 408-924-45861

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