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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Not Another LGBTQ101: The Problem with Sex, Gender

Ouch! Sex hurts! : Not the intercourse, but the discourse of sexism in Hmong America

Chong Vang is a co-founder of the collective, Midwest Solidarity Movement. Students at his highschool knows him by Louquieus (pronouced as Lucus) Vaj, while a few oh his colleagues and family members know him by [Ab] Txoov Vaj. Chong idenifies as a 1.5 queer Hmong Thai American refugee pro-feminist writer organizer activist. He was born in a beautiful Hmong Thai refugee camp by the name of Ban Vinai and moved to the United States when he was two years old. Currently, he resides in the heart of Minneapolis where the population is diverse, but the community is strong. Chong is a student at Minnesota State University, Mankato. He is a Gender in Women's Studies Major and Ethnic Studies Minor. With this, he plans to obtain a Ph.D in Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies with a critical focus on American Studies. Chong intends to become a college professor someday and teach Interseciotnal Studies on LGBTQQI topics.


How to get involved with Community Activism/ Taking Action/ Civic Engagement

Duachi Her received her Master of Science degree in Community Health Education from the University of Wisconsin - La Crosse and her Bachelor of Arts degree in Health and Exercise Science from Gustavus Adolphus College. She currently works at Hennepin County Public Health Department as a Community Health Specialist and volunteers part of her time as the Secretary for the Hmong Health Care Professionals Coalition, a collaborative partnership that invests in improving the health and well-being of the Hmong community by providing education, advocacy, and supporting health research. As a health activist and educator, her passion is to encourage individuals to take more responsibilities in learning about the behaviors. during her free time, she enjoys working out to stay fit and playing with her dog.

Mary Xiong is a Diabetic Health Navigator Coordinator at a nonprofit community health clinic, a community organizer, and the second runner up for the 2013-2014 Miss Hmong MN pageant. She has worked in various political campaigns, was the finance co-chair for the first Hmong City Council in St. Paul and is a member of the Hmong Health Care Professionals Coalition and Hmong Pageant Organization. She is passionate about improving the health status of communities of color and eliminating health disparities. Mary received her Bachelor of Applied Science in Public Health Education and Promotion from the Univeristy of Minnesota Duluth.


Engaged Leaders: What the World Needs

Ilean Her is the CEO of the Hmong Elders Center, an adult day care center, providing direct service to the Hmong population in the Twin Cities. She's an expert on elders health care issues and health disparities in Minnesota. She received her Law degree from the University of Minnesota, and her bachelor from Hamline University. Ms. Her is a respected and recognized expert on leadership training, community activism, and civic and political engagement. She is a staunch advocate for the preservation of the cultureal heritage and arts of the Asian Pacific American community.


Using Theater as a Tool To Talk About Touch Issue

May Lee Yang is a playwright, prose writer, and performance artist. Her plays include Confessions of a Lazy Hmong Woman, Ten Reasons Why I'd Be a Bad Porn Star, The Child's House and Sia(b). Her work has been presented locally at Mu Performing Arts, The Center of Hmong Arts and Talent, Intermedia Arts, The Illusion Theater's Lights' Up Program, The MN Fringe Festival as well as nationally at Out North Theater (Anchorage, AK) and the National Asian American Theater Festival in Los Angeles, CA. She has directed the Hmong-lanuage version of Confessions We Are young, a play she devised and co-wrote in collaboration with Hmong teens as well as assistant directed Kung Fu Zombies Versus Cannibals (Mu Performing Arts). She has received  grants from the Bush Foundation's Leadership Fellowship, The MN State Arts Board, The Playwright Center Many Voices Program, the Midwestern Voices and Visions Residency Award, the Jerome Foundation, and the National Performance Network. When not writing or performing, she works as a teachiing artist with teens. She is currently working on a play about divorce in the Hmong community.

Being Asian: Exploring the Question of Racial and Ethnic Identity

Sachi Sekimoto is originally from Tokyo, Japan. She received her PhD from the University of New Mexico. She teaches Intercultural Communication Studies at Minnesota State University, Mankato.


Boosting the Inner Self towards Social Involvement and Self-Actualization

Sylvia C. Labial received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology at Mindanao State Univeristy, Magna Cum Laude. She then received her diaploma in teaching Special Education at Illigan Medical Center College, Philippines. Sylvia is a Master of Arts in Education major in Special Education major in Speical Education at Mindanao University for Science and Technology, Philippines.


Money Matters

 Sophia Bera, CFP is the founder of Gen Y Planning and is the top Google search for "Financial Planner for Millennials." She's worked virtually with people in their 20s and 30s across the country. She is a contributor for AOL's Daily Finance website and has been quoted on various websites and publication including Forbes, Business Insider, Yahoo, Money Magazine, InvestmentNews, Financial Advisor Magazine, and the Huffinton Post. Sophia is a sought after speaker, and presenter, and an active member of the Financial Planning Association. In her free time, she enjoys  performing as an actor/singer and traveling the world with her husband, Jake. Follow her on Twitter @sophiabera or sign up for the Gen Y Planning Newsletter to stay up to date on financial articles geared towards Millennials.


Peace Corps Tale

Albert Vang is 32 years old, born in France and lived there for 7 years before moving to the United States in the winter of 1989 where he has lived in Illinois, California, Wisconsin, and now Minnesota. Albert graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities in 2005 with a degree in Psychology. In 2010, he accepted the invitation to volunteer his time with the Peace Corps where he served in Senegal, West Africa as a Health Extension Agent and later on, as a Peace Corps Volunteer Leader. Albert finished his service and returned back to Minnesota at the end of June 2013. He now works part time at Life by Design, Inc. where he supports adults with minor developmental disabilities to be more independent in their lives.