Back to All Events

Our Shared Journey: Symposium on 40 years of Lao in the United States

  • University of Minnesota (map)

The University of Minnesota's Immigration History Research Center is partnering with the Lao American Writer’s Summit to host a symposium marking the 40 years of Lao in the United States. Lao refugees have been resettling in the United States since 1975, following a civil war complicated by U.S. intervention in Southeast Asia during the Vietnam War. Today, Minnesota has the third largest percentage of Lao Americans living in the state. “Lao American and Historical Contexts” is an interdisciplinary symposium at the University of Minnesota that will explore both the history of Lao immigrant and refugees in the United States and contemporary issues. This symposium will feature panels and presentations by researchers and community members examining the diverse perspectives and contributions of Lao Americans.

Friday, April 17, 2015
9:30am - 5:00pm

9:30am - 10:00am: Registration and Welcome Remarks

10:00 - 11:30: Keynote: State of Lao(tian) Americans
Phitsamay Sychitkokhong Uy, Assistant Professor, University of Massachusetts-Lowell

11:30 - 1:00: Lunch

1:00 - 2:30: Documenting Lao America: Narrating Ethnicity and Cultural Memories: Perspectives on Lao American History and Experiences
Discussant: Channapha Khamvongsa
Lao Oral History Archive-Vinya Sysamouth
Immigrant Stories and Digital Archives-Saengmany Ratsabout
Lao Diaspora Project-Chanida Phaengdara Potter
Laos in the House-Catzie Vilayphonh

2:45 - 4:15: Lao American Literary Journeys
Discussant: Bryan Thao Worra
Saymoukda Vongsay
Adisack Nhouyvanisvong
Ova Saopeng
Chanida Phaengdara Potter

Saturday April 18, 2015
9:30am - 3:00pm

9:30am - 10:00am: Registration

10:00 - 10:30: Welcome Remarks

10:45 - 12:00: Workshops (details TBA)

12:00 - 1:00: Lunch

1:00 - 2:30: Workshops (details TBA)

2:30 - 3:00: Closing Remarks

6:00 - 8:00: Closing reception


Name: Immigration History Research Center
Sponsored by: Immigration History Research Center, Asian American Studies, Global Studies, Lao American Writers Summit, UROC University of Minnesota Urban Research and Outreach-Engagement Center, The Lao Assistance Center Of Minnesota, Center for Lao Studies

Earlier Event: April 5
No Class - Easter Sunday
Later Event: April 11
Lao New Year @ Wat Lao Mixayaram