Business connections are necessary to ambitious, savvy, young people. The purpose of this website is to share what young talent from various ethnic communities and various industries has learned. Young people who channel passion toward non-profit ventures are spotlighted on this site. The ability for young professionals to interface directly is also provided. The website is designed for forward-thinking, driven, professionals.
Interviews conducted and profiled here change the image that young professionals sport suits, tote blackberries, and spend the hours from nine to five in a cubicle. Individuals bonded by success are featured. Here is a taste of what is offered on the website.
Africa Faith and Justice Network-The organization brings the African people concerns to policy makers. The impoverished majority is of particular concern. Work is being done to promote responsible U.S. foreign policy in the country. A high level of advocacy in Washington, D.C. is trying to bring a shift in the American mentality and policy. The organization is a Catholic-based program working with Catholic communities and others in the U.S. and Africa to promote the message of justice transformation and peace.
MeccaOne Media-This forum has been founded to give the everyday Western Muslim a voice. Some of the notable successes include a live Islamic call to prayer broadcast and Islamic podcasts on iTunes. MeccaOne Media is filling a void in American Muslim media. When it began broadcasting in San Jose, California in 2002, twenty-two thousand Muslim and non-Muslim listeners tuned in. It had an overwhelmingly positive worldwide response. Future projects include a website on Islam that caters to non-Muslims and a satellite TV program.
Association of Professionals in Business Management-APBM is striving to make certificated business a profession. It would have continuing education requirements and code of ethics. The certification would be MBA curriculum-based. Certification is earned by passing a 16-hour exam, consisting of four parts. Business skills and knowledge will be tested. The exam can be taken in conjunction, after, or in place of an MBA. Employers would know the person had acquired a set of management skills and a standard knowledge base. The certification is intended to be similar to that required for accounting, engineering, medicine, and law.
Featured Young Professionals
People associated with the non-profits mentioned above and a cultural newspaper include the following.
- Jacques Bahati- Policy Analyst for the Analyst for the Africa Faith and Justice Network
- Omar Ali- Founder of MeccaOne Media
- Devi Vallhaneni-President and CEO of the Association of Professionals in Business Management
- Luis Andre Gazitua-Senior advisor to the mayor of Miami-Dade County. Gazitua is associated with Next in Line that works to build relationships for the membership. It also educates members on pertinent community issues. Creating a unique networking group comprised of the next generation of South Florida community pillars is the goal. Habitat for Humanity is his favorite cause.
- Hannah Allam-Cairo Bureau Chief for McClatchy Newspaper. Hannah reports spectacles and ravages of war in a way that brings them close to home. The reports help readers understand the real meaning of combat and conflict.
The advice given by the participants range from practical to shared adages they have learned on their journey to becoming a cultural change in the world. Practical advice includes having a plan, information, and superior product. Learning from a variety of situations, sources, and people is advised.
Having a thirst for innovative ideas and technology is seen as a valuable attribute. Do the work correctly the first time so that it does not have to be done over. Make community involvement a priority over personal gain.
The more empirical advice suggested here is that time heals when the following practices are exercised.
- Value over might
- Mercy instead of hate
- Love rather than hate
- Hope over fear
- Converse rather than shout
- Be a moderate instead of an extremist
- Listen instead of exuding disinterest
- Help rather than hurt
Humility is a key to every door. It allows people to relate to the unfortunate as well as the powerfully rich.
Favorite adages that are shared by these professionals are the following. “Check yourself before you wreck yourself.” and “Keep your eye on the prize.”
As these interviews are conducted, the subjects are asked about the challenges they face. Among those cited are staying emotionally detached from victimization, negative stereotyping, adding value to a post, and security. Some of the challenges have to do with culture. Decades of misinformation concerning Palestinian de-humanization and concrete understanding of Arab heritage were mentioned. Udai, is an impressive student initiative working for a better India. Challenges cited for this group include working with grass-root organizations located in remote India locations, regular communication and funding international travels.
Sadiya Ahmed, Governmental Relations Coordinator for CAIRO-Chicago says being a Muslim woman who tries to make a community difference is difficult. The concept of Muslim women being capable of making an impact on public life is not entirely understood. The Council on American-Islamic Relations advocacy is the largest Muslim civil rights group. The Chicago organization functions independently with a unique set of goals. They include taking and recording complaints against Muslims, political empowerment, monitoring local media, and Muslim community outreach to foster a better understanding between the Muslim and non-Muslim communities.
The young professionals profiled on this website are concerned about important issues. They include HIV/AIDS, peace, violent conflict prevention, good governance, debt, restorative justice, water, and trade. When asked how success is measured, various responses were given.
Both qualitative and quantitative yardsticks are used. The number of people who benefit and feedback from one-on-one interaction, phone calls, and emails are measures that are easier to monitor than others mentioned. Others included recognition of a program by outside individuals or being able to match the good their ancestors were able to provide.
Whatever the cause, the young people and the organizations profiled here are worthy of admiration. Goals they gave, among others, were peace where there is violence, finding a voice for the everyday Western Muslim and making business management a profession. Such things as a passion for the poor and the events of 9/11 were cited as motivation.