The Massachusetts chapter of the Indian American Forum for Political Education will celebrate Asian Heritage Month with an event on May 21 at 6:30 p.m. at the Burlington Marriott hotel in Burlington, Mass., with guest of honor Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick. The event will also recognize Indian Americans for contributions to the state, as well as kick of the group’s annual Summer Political Internship program.
According to IAFPE-MA President Ramesh Advani, the Indian American community has made tremendous contributions to Massachusetts and this warrants recognition. During the event, exceptional leaders in diverse fields — education, medicine, technology and others — will be honored by the forum.
The event also will kick off IAFPE-MA’s annual Summer Political Internship program, which is now in its 12th year. The goal of the IAFPE’s Summer Political Internship program is to develop young Indian American leaders for service in our communities, the United States of America and the world at large and to create an engaged Indian American community that is aware of its rights and sensitive to its responsibilities. The program provides local college students with a unique opportunity to learn first-hand about the political process and what it takes to get involved.
The interns will spend between six and 10 weeks working in the office of a congressman or senator at the state or federal level, at a non-government agency or for political parties. Past interns have worked at the Office of the Attorney General, the White House, Congress, the State House, the Indian Embassy and in various governmental agencies such as the Department of Energy. A limited number of interns will be given a stipend. Stipends will be awarded to those interns who demonstrate exemplary performance in their internships.
“The Indian American community can and should do more politically,” said Advani. “Making a difference means being seen and heard and participating in decisions involving all of us and our children – immigration, health care, education and so many others. There are business and social issues that require creative thought and Indian Americans have the talent to help contribute to the solutions. But talent alone is not enough, and we hope that the IAFPE Summer Political Internship program will spur a lifelong interest and involvement in politics for many of its participants.”
For ticketing information, visit www.iafpe-ma.org.
The Indian American Forum for Political Education is the oldest and largest Indian American organization for political education in the country and is nationally recognized for its work in political empowerment process. The forum, established in 1982, has 22 state chapters across the nation. It has helped educate the Indian American community to participate as full partners in American democracy.