American University of Health Sciences (AUHS) attended the 26th Annual Interfaith Intercultural Breakfast, hosted by The California Conference for Equality and Justice (CCEJ) in the Long Beach Convention Center on Sunday, March 2, 2017. Dr. Marilyn Uvero, the AUHS Vice President of Operations and Development, Chantal Jura, the Director of Affiliations and Development, Sara Pol-Lim, the AUHS Board of Trustees Chair, and Hai Luong, an AUHS Admissions Coordinator, attended the breakfast conference to better understand the mission and organizational structure of the CCEJ and to reach out to other institutions who share the same values as AUHS.
“The CCEJ is a human relations organization dedicated to social equality. They confront biases and racism through education, conflict resolution, and advocacy,” said Dr. Uvero, “It was my first Interfaith Intercultural Breakfast and it was a very exploratory meeting. CCEJ gave me insight on how to positively respond to racism through education.”
The Interfaith Intercultural Breakfast was brought to the university’s attention by Lim, according to Dr. Uvero. AUHS then sponsored a table at the event. There were thousands of attendees including representatives from Kaiser Permanente, the Cambodian Association of America and even the Mayor of Long Beach, Robert Garcia, according to Dr. Uvero.
“The organizations that attended this conference came to celebrate what the CCEJ had accomplished,” said Dr. Uvero.
Dr. Uvero commended CCEJ for responding to the issues of racism and social inequity by establishing programs such as the Building Bridge Camp, Conscious Classrooms, the Restorative Justice Juvenile Diversion Program, and more.
“Through the establishments of these programs, CCEJ proved that negative concepts such as racism can be resolved through education,” Dr. Uvero said.
breakfastThe most memorable presentation Dr. Uvero had during the event was from poet and activist, Luis J. Rodriguez. Rodrigues was a keynote speaker at the breakfast conference and his speech focused on equality.
“He shared political comments, mostly about biases and inequality but the one thing that really struck me was when he said that the United States is not for a selected people, the United states is for all people,” said Dr. Uvero, “He also said that the Earth is for all people and that we need to stand firm because when we step on the Earth, we claim that is for everyone. I thought that was very insightful.”
After the presentations, Dr. Uvero had an opportunity to meet Rex Richardson, the Vice-Mayor of Long Beach.
“We introduced ourselves to Vice-Mayor Richardson and talked about the mission of AUHS,” Dr. Uverso said, “Vice-Mayor Richardson said he appreciated how we (AUHS) joined them at the breakfast conference. I said that we looked forward to having him get to know (the university) better and we will continue to support to the CCEJ.”
Dr. Uvero also had the opportunity to meet with long-time humanitarian Gene Lentzner who had offered 40 years of service on the CCEJ board. Lentzner’s 95th birthday was the same day as the breakfast conference.
“He inspired me on how it really means to dedicate yourself and your services to an organization that you believe in,” Dr. Uvero said.
Dr. Uvero had been an educator for 35 years and many of her core values aligned with the CCEJ’s mission.
“I look at my students all equal. I do not see color and I do not see ethnicity. But what I do see is whether or not they are attending class and whether or not the have the tenacity to become what they choose to be in life,” Dr. Uvero said, “I am there to help them achieve their dreams because one’s character and success has no color.”
AUHS is a private, for-profit, minority owned, minority serving, Christian-based university whose mission is to educate and equip students with life careers and to produce quality health care professionals for the community, the nation, and the world. It is a university where appreciation of life and one’s spiritual reason for existence can be nurtured. AUHS offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), a Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Sciences (BSPS) and a Master of Science in Clinical Research (MSCR). To request more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (562) 988-2278. For the latest news, pictures and videos of American University of Health Sciences’ events, like us on Facebook @auhs.edu and follow us on Twitter @AUHS_Campus and Instagram @auhsedu.