On Wednesday, December 19, 2007, Asian American Youth Against Tobacco (AAYAT) worked collaboratively with staff from the Asian American Community Services (AACS) in Columbus to host a legislative meet and greet event with Rep. Jay Goyal of Mansfield. The event was held at the Clarion Hotel & Conference Center on E. Dublin-Granville Rd. in Columbus from 6:30-8:30 pm. The evening began with a welcome from AACS Executive Director, Lhakpa Tsering M.A. and AAYAT Project Director, Jennifer Brindle, M.Ed. A youth testimonial was presented by a former participant in the Project TNT (Towards No Tobacco) program sponsored by AACS. Kunal Parikh, a third-year youth intern from the Columbus chapter, had the honor of presenting, guest speaker, Rep. Jay Goyal’s esteemed accomplishments and introduction. Rep. Goyal spoke to a full audience of youth and parents about his experiences as growing up, the pressures that youth face in reaching for success, and his journey serving in the Ohio House of Representatives. A native of Mansfield, Rep. Goyal was elected to serve as House Representative for the 73rd District in November 2006 at the age of 26 and is one of the first Asian Americans to serve the honor in Ohio. Upon completion of Rep. Goyal’s Columbus AAYAT presented a youth panel discussion about the pressures of being youth and Asian American, their experiences in AAYAT and community service, and advice for other youth who are interested in getting involved in their community. Panelists included AAYAT interns, Eileen Liu, a senior at Worthington-Kilbourne High School, Marissa Liu, a sophmore at Worthinton-Kilbourne High School, Kunal Parikh, a senior at Reynoldsburg High School, and mentor, Hans Li, a sophomore at The Ohio State University. Quyen Do and Tina Patrick from Cincinnati AAYAT were also present at the event. Columbus AAYAT would like to thank the following individuals for their hard work in making this event possible: Rep. Jay Goyal and his legislative aide, Annette Rex; Gothai Jayaraj, Shoma Smith, and Lhakpa Tsering from Asian American Community Services.

Columbus AAYAT and Staff from AACS

AACS Executive Director, Lhakpa Tsering, welcoming everyone to the event.Youth testimonial from Project TNTKunal Parikh introduction for Rep. Goyal.Rep. Jay Goyal of the 73rd District in Mansfield.AAYAT Youth Panel

 

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