Get Ready for the 2021 EWC/EWCA Conference!

Come join alumni and friends on July 16-17 from 2:30 pm-6 pm HST for the 2021 EWC/EWCA International Conference, Bridge to 2022: Virtual Mini-Conference and Awards. We are excited to invite our 68,000+ alumni from 179 countries to participate and experience the conference. A dynamic, easy to use platform will give a different look and feel.

Mahalo to the 156 alumni who told us what they wanted to see at the conference. In the survey, you told us you want to get updates and hear what’s happening at EWC and learn about interesting things alumni are doing. Your topics of choice are Climate Change; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; Misinformation in the Media; and Pandemics and Planetary Health. We’re now working to make your suggestions a reality!

Registration and program information are coming soon.

Check for updates on the conference website

Questions? Contact the Office of Alumni Engagement by email at or phone 1-808-944-7506. #EastWestCenterAlumni

Legacy and Recommitment to Advocacy, Equality, Justice

I came to this land, the land of indigenous Native Hawaiians, from the Philippines. Today I want to speak to my fellow immigrants and fellow AAPIs: to the essential workers on the front line, to the service members who wear our flag, to the parents with big dreams for their children. No matter where we came from, AAPIs and immigrants belong in our country’s long fight for justice. We belong in the America we are building together.

Amefil “Amy” Agbayani

Legacy and Recommitment to Advocacy, Equality, Justice for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders and All Racial Groups” by Doris Ching (EWC/EWCA International Conference, 2014) and Amefil “Amy” Agbayani (Institute for Student Exchange, PhD in Political Science 1964-1969), is based on a survey of national community and higher education Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) leaders. The article focuses on five current challenges: 2020 Census, COVID-19, immigration, elections, racism and discrimination. The diverse AAPI community is the fastest growing ethnic group in the United States (6%). An internally strong and united AAPI, coupled with external partnerships with all racial/ethnic groups, can create a more powerful force for equity and justice for all racial/ethnic groups than standing alone.

Continue reading

Stop Asian Hate

The analysis released by the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino, this month examined hate crimes in 16 of America’s largest cities. It revealed that while such crimes in 2020 decreased overall by 7 percent, those targeting Asian people rose by nearly 150 percent. 

“Anti-Asian Hate Crimes Increased by Nearly 150% in 2020, Mostly
in N.Y. and L.A., New Report Says”, NBC News, March 9, 2021

Continue reading

Christina Monroe appointed as Director of Alumni Engagement

We are pleased to start 2021 with new energy and an addition to the alumni office. Christina Monroe has been appointed as Director of Alumni Engagement.

Aloha EWCA ‘ohana,

Happy 2021 to you and your families! May the new year bring health, safety and prosperity to you and your community.

It has been a pleasure to meet and collaborate with so many of you since I joined the East-West Center 16 years ago, first as an Asia Pacific Leadership Program Fellow, then Leadership Education Specialist (including APLP, PILP and YSEALI), and most recently as the Leadership Program Senior Manager. Under my direction, the EWC Leadership Program increasingly involved alumni and alumni chapters as expert resources, especially for programs in the region. It is an honor to now serve as Director of Alumni Engagement. Leaning heavily on Noreen Tanouye’s years of experience and deep relationships and on EWCA President Amanda Ellis’s expertise and commitment, I will lead the current Alumni/Associates Office, now renamed as the Office of Alumni Engagement.

The FY2021 Appropriations bill, recently signed by the U.S. President, includes a $3 million uptick in federal funding for the Center. Excitingly, President Vuylsteke has included alumni engagement in the set of priorities for fund usage. We know that alumni are and will continue to be at the heart of the Center. The energy and expertise of alumni is essential not only as a resource to sustain the Center, but as a source of new innovative programming, which is especially important now.

I will need your help to understand the needs, interests and expertise of our diverse alumni ‘ohana. Starting now and continuing until we hear from everyone who wants to share, we’ll be conducting a listening tour to get your inputs and ideas, specifically in three ways: (1) an all-alumni survey; (2) a series of meetings with the EWCA Board, Chapters and individual alumni; and (3) an “open door” for anyone to contact me directly ( / +1.808.944.7645)

We know many of you are eager to hear about and contribute to the 2021 virtual conference and 2022 Hawaii conference. These gatherings are a top priority for us all and we will be sharing information as soon as possible.

I hope to bring the same level of enthusiasm and genuine love for the alumni ‘ohana of great alumni leaders such as Gordon Ring and Karen Knudsen. I will build on the foundation that so many have worked hard to build over 60 years, while bringing fresh ideas and energy needed for the next 60.

Please reach out with initiatives that interest you and/or are your area of expertise. We want to hear from you!

Christina Monroe

Director of Office of Alumni Engagement


When you’re a member of the EWC “family” the world opens up and you have friends throughout the region — whether in capital cities or in remote villages. Wherever I traveled, EWC alumni extended generous hospitality and provided much appreciated guidance. When I sprained my ankle on one trip alumni showed up at my hotel with walking sticks and canes. I still have them. They’re a reminder of the bond of friendship we share. I’m very grateful to the alumni for their kindness and for their commitment to continuing the East-West Center’s mission. Being involved with EWC/EWCA International Conferences was always a rewarding highlight. I’ve worked on ten international alumni conferences and each of them hold a special memory for me. Joining hands and singing Aloha Oe at the close of each conference ends with the phrase, “until we meet again” . . . I look forward to “meeting again” with each of you in the future.


Working with alumni across the region and U.S. was one of the most rewarding and important highlights of my long career at the East-West Center. Our alumni are the Center’s most valuable and important legacy.


East-West Center Memories – Share your fondest EWC memories with us

EWC Memories

EWC is celebrating its 60th anniversary next year. In anticipation, we are asking everyone to share his or her fondest EWC memory with us. Share stories of your experiences at EWC, what you are doing now, and how the Center influenced you.

What do you remember or treasure most about the EWC? Is there a special story or experience you would like to share? Did you meet your spouse at EWC? Did you obtain a degree that helped you establish/further your career? Maybe cooking and sharing meals with participants from around the world at the Hale Manoa kitchen is a memory that comes to mind.

Got a memorable photo to share?  We would love to see it. Share your story with us at EWC Memories and we may feature it online.


2017 Summer Travel Grant Series: Internship with the Bank of PNG

Summer Travel Grant 2017 Recipient

Ludwig Aba



I started my internship at the Bank of Papua New Guinea (PNG) from June 19 – July 28 2017. The commitment hours were five hours per working day for thirty days, that amounted to 150 hours. During this time, I was engaged with the Financial Markets Department of the Bank of PNG, specifically at the Office of Open Market Operations that implements Monetary Policy of the Bank. This office conducts weekly auction of PNG National Government’s Treasury bills and Inscribed stocks. The Bank also auction its own central bank bill to influence liquidity and interest rates. Aside from the formal auction of Treasury bills and Inscribed stocks, the Bank of PNG sells bonds and bills at the Tap, which is over the counter transactions.

Continue reading

2017 Summer Travel Grant Series: Internship and Field Work in Vanuatu

Summer Travel Grant 2017 Recipient 

Lilly Fatdal



The EWCA travel grant enabled me to complete a four week internship program and one week of field work with the collaboration of the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) in Vanuatu.

During the internship placement, I was able to participate in national conferences and farm visits. During these visits I taught and assisted extension officers on how to identify Cucumber mosaic virus (CMV) symptoms on kava. At the same time I trained them on how to use Immunostrip assay to test for Cucumber mosaic virus, which is a severe cause of dieback disease of kava, resulting in total crop loss.

Continue reading