The Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community’s Young River People’s Council and the Youth Services Department hosted the Youth Peace Ambassadors Conference Dinner at the Salt River Community Building on the evening of August 22. The conference was held August 21-28 at the Holiday Inn Express of North Scottsdale and SRPMIC, presented by the American University of Sovereign Nations (AUSN), which is located on the Community. The SRPMIC Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs was approached by AUSN Provost Darryl R. Macer, asking if the Community would accommodate a dinner for the conference. The YRPC met with Macer and agreed to host the dinner, along with some social dancing.
“We were super excited to see the international culture exchange between the Youth Council and students from AUSN,” said Martha Martinez, Youth Development assistant to the Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs.
International students attending AUSN mingled throughout the Community Building with members of the Young River People’s Council, making new friendships, and then attended cultural presentations from Community youth as well as a few of the students who came from other countries. The Bird Singing and Dancing by the River performance group and the SRPMIC Traditional Dancers demonstrated traditional dances and explained their meanings.
Fifteen different countries were represented at the conference and dinner: Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Japan, Liberia, Malaysia, Mexico, Nepal, Philippines, Thailand, Tunisia and the United States.
During the dinner, Macer welcomed all the students and thanked the Community for hosting the event. The evening ended with a giveaway and a Going Home dance, in which everyone participated.
The AUSN campus is located on the Community, off Pima and Chaparral roads. The school is the first-ever United States medical school and first-ever master of public health (MPH) program located on Native American sovereign land. According to the AUSN website, AUSN started classes in two master’s programs on April 22 and is now actively recruiting students for the first cohort of its masters in public health degree.
For more information on the program and university, visit www.au-sn.com.