2024 Research Symposium

2024 Community Research Symposium

Roundtable conversations, presentations, critical examination, and invitations to all attendees to engage in lively discussion.

Friday, June 7, 2024 from 9 am - 6 pm 

UNCG School of Education

1300 Spring Garden St., Greensboro, NC 27412

Register now for this free event.


About the Symposium

Welcome to the 2024 Community Research Symposium! Join us for this free event, which brings together researchers, educators, community members, and others to share their latest findings and insights. At the Symposium, you can attend presentations, participate in workshops, and network with peers in the field or similarly interested individuals. Lunch will be provided. Register now for this free event nd be a part of lively, important discussions that contribute to deeper knowledge about North Carolina's Asian communities. We look forward to seeing you there!

About the Sponsor

We are an independent network of researchers and community members housed at the Montagnard Dega Association, one of the oldest community-based organizations of refugee origin in North Carolina. Our network continues to grow as we connect to other refugee communities and note similar stories, historical struggles, and local and transnational challenges that have often remained invisible and unexamined. All are welcome.

Symposium Program


9:00 AM - 10:00 AM

Check in, meet and greet


10:00 AM - 11:00 AM

Welcome, Kickoff Panel

Facilitator: Sharon Morrison


A brief welcome so we can launch into a productive day. A panel of our research network members will highlight key issues our network has been covering during COVID and until now.


11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Conversation. How We Respond: Southeast Asian resettlement in NC

Facilitators: Becky Butler and Kevin Kim


This session examines a unique part of North Carolina’s immigration story, the resettlement of Montagnards from 1986 on, and asks what lessons might be learned that could matter today. Today’s conversation is a continuation of a session begun in May by Southeast Asian community members at UNC Chapel Hill Carolina Asia Center’s “Bringing Southeast Asia Home” workshop facilitated by Network cofounder Andrew Young. We are pleased to have today’s session facilitated by Carolina Asia Center’s Assistant Director to Southeast Asian Initiatives,


12:00 PM - 1:00 PM

Lunch and Learn.

Grab some lunch and then join a table according to your interest: Health, History, Arts, Communities, and Involvement and Opportunities


1:00 PM - 2:00 PM

Low-Income Communities of Refugee Origin: Health & population profiles

Facilitator: Andrew Young


We have sought to identify the characteristics of many newcomer communities in a manner that does not deny their histories, unique cultures, or right to be identified as they choose. In adopting the term, Low income Asian American Communities of Refugee Origin (LIAACRO), we direct our concerns to public policy practice, influencers, and decision-makers in North Carolina, believing that currently used bureaucratic labels combined with popular stereotypes explain how the lack of newcomer population demographics undermines both research and community health.


2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Anecdata to History: Locating stories within a larger historical framework

Facilitator: Sara Colm


Working with communities of refugee origin often means we have “anecdata” consisting of many individual stories — some amazing, some terrifying, some inspiring — about individuals’ lives and what they saw, heard and believed at the time of their experience. Oral history is sometimes the only history we have, but through historical study it is possible to contextualize individual memories, spur social action, and enlarge understanding in ways that are beneficial to the storytellers and their communities, historians, and the public. 


3:00 PM - 4:00 PM

Communities Speak: Research we can use

Facilitator: Melina Ksor


Research is more than finding and reporting new facts. Universities, academics, administrators, policy makers, public and private funders, philanthropists, and specialists often decide what research communities need, how it should be conducted, and who should lead it. Outsiders often also determine policy recommendations arising from the research. In this session the Network has invited various community representatives we’ve worked with to have their say about the conduct of research and engagement with their communities. For example, What is fair and equitable research? What is appropriate “give back”? What power or influence do communities have in the creation or control of a research budget? 


4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

Opportunities Session: Projects in development, in progress, and to join

Facilitator: Sudha Shreeniwas


We end the day with calls to action and opportunities for Symposium attendees to sit with those working on projects in progress or in development, and projects which invite you to become involved.


After 5: Happy Hour

We will judge the success of this day based on the interesting conversations and connections you make. Please don't disappoint us!