UFV Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies celebrates 10 years, rebrands as South Asian Studies Institute.
UFV’s Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies began with an idea and a commitment from the community.
Now, as it celebrates 10 years of serving as a centre of activity, events, information, scholarship, and research related to the Indo-Canadian community, it is extending its focus to embrace regions of South Asia.
Centre director Satwinder Bains announced the name change to the South Asian Studies Institute (SASI) at a celebration event marking the centre’s first decade on May 3.
“As we enter our second decade, we felt it was important for our identity to reflect the broader field of South Asian studies,” noted Bains. “This will result in increased opportunities for UFV faculty and students to connect and collaborate with partner institutions and projects throughout South Asia. We will continue the very important work of facilitating research and other connections, but with a wider mandate.”
The Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies (now SASI) has served as a hub where scholars from UFV programs, Indo-Canadian community members, groups from all sectors of the community, international visitors, students, and scholars from India/South Asia come together.
“Our young university has done a remarkable job of building connections and partnerships across the world, and the centre, which now deservedly will be an institute, has played a major role in that success,” said UFV President Mark Evered at the 10-year celebration, at which he and his wife Maureen were made honorary patrons of the new institute.
The institute supports the development, maintenance and strengthening of links that lead to diverse experiences for students, faculty, and community. It initiates and supports an interdisciplinary range of courses in India-Canada Studies at UFV, and programs and activities that promote the study of and engagement with the sub-continent and the Indo-Canadian diaspora. It also houses the BC Regional Innovation Chair on Canada–India Partnership Development, and maintains a close relationship with the UFV campus in Chandigarh, India.
In the past ten years the it has undertaken many research projects, created a program of study, supported and mentored student research, and partnered with universities in India. The CICS has built strong community partnerships locally and across Canada with numerous Indian diaspora communities, held international conferences, invited visiting scholars from around the world, curated acclaimed exhibits, and developed business ties with India.
It also serves as a repository of history for the Indo-Canadian community. It has partnered with the Gur Sikh Temple National Historic Site on several projects, and is currently working with the Royal British Columbia Museum to ensure that the Indo-Canadian story is reflected in museum exhibits chronicling the history of B.C.
The Abbotsford area has one of the largest concentrations of Indo-Canadian population in Canada. Starting in the early 2000s, UFV and the community worked together to build a stronger connection through the creation of the CICS.
In April 2005, after several years of fundraising and planning on the part of UFV and the Indo-Canadian community, then-Premier Gordon Campbell announced the centre’s launch. It began operations in 2006, completing its first academic year of service in 2007.
“It’s important that we look at the cultural fabric of our communities and ensure that what we’re doing brings them into our embrace,” noted former UFV president Skip Bassford at the time.
“I am very much enjoying looking back and reflecting on what we have achieved in our first decade. At the same time, I am also every excited about what the future holds for the South Asian Studies Institute,” says Bains.
Contact Satwinder Bains at email@example.com to discuss potential projects and partnerships.
UFV to publish Shauna Singh Baldwin’s first non-fiction book
Reluctant Rebellions: New and Selected Non-fiction, to be launched at UFV on Sept 29. The author is available for other BC and Alberta engagements. The University of the Fraser Valley’s long association with writer Shauna Singh Baldwin will be strengthened this fall when the university’s Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies publishes Baldwin’s first work of non-fiction. […]
June 3, 2016:
The Royal BC Museum spearheads
a new legacy initiative with BC’s Punjabi community
Victoria, BC — As the province’s museum and archives, the Royal BC Museum is always looking for ways to connect with BC’s diverse cultural groups and ensure their stories are part of the over-arching narrative the Royal BC Museum preserves and shares.
Now, the Royal BC Museum, in partnership with the Centre for Indo Canadian Studies at the University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) and through collaboration with regional institutions, is establishing seven community consultations throughout the province to gather feedback from the Punjabi community, a pioneer group that has made a significant impact on the province’s cultural, economic and social history.
The first two consultations will happen in June:
- June 27, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm: the Reach Gallery Museum, Abbotsford
- June 28, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm: the Central BC Railway & Forestry Industry Museum, Prince George
The consultations are the first step in the creation of a provincial Punjabi legacy project that preserves and shares community history. In fact, the consultations will invite attendees to suggest what this legacy project might look like and include.
“These consultations will act as a catalyst to kick-start the momentum needed to undertake this historically significant work with the Royal BC Museum,” said Satwinder Bains, Director of the Centre for Indo Canadian Studies at UFV. “And we are proud to be partnering with the province’s museum in sharing the legacy of the community’s presence in BC.”
“This is a great opportunity for the community to advise the Royal BC Museum on how we want our Punjabi history to be preserved for future generations,” said Dr. Balbir Gurm, Chair of the Royal BC Museum Punjabi Intercultural History Advisory Committee.
The consultations will also inform the Royal BC Museum’s long-term planning for research, collections, temporary and permanent exhibitions and learning outcomes. What the Royal BC Museum’s Learning team discovers at these sessions will help guide the creation of online multicultural content for schools, linked to the new curriculum. The consultations have been made possible thanks, in part, to the generous support of the London Drugs Foundation.
The Learning team will bring along the Royal BC Museum-designed and -built Historical Wrongs outreach kits, created in partnership with BC’s Chinese Canadian community, to discuss as a possible model for long-term outreach.
The boxes are a tangible example of a successful model that can be used in the future at schools, libraries and community centres. Such educational boxes can also be created to explore important elements of a cultural group’s history and contemporary perspectives.
To register for either event or for more information, contact Sharanjit.Sandhra@ufv.ca by June 22.
About the Royal BC Museum
The Royal BC Museum explores the province’s human history and natural history, advances new knowledge and understanding of BC, and provides a dynamic forum for discussion and a place for reflection. The museum and archives celebrate culture and history, telling the stories of BC in ways that enlighten, stimulate and inspire. Looking to the future, the Royal BC Museum will be a refreshed, modern museum, extending its reach far beyond Victoria as a world-class cultural venue and repository of digital treasures.
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by RBCM Media on November 21, 2015
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>> view the exhibit panels (PDF): / /
>> view slideshow from the opening of the show
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