Conference topics: Change and Integration

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Change and Integration: 

Growing immigrant and refugee populations in the Midwestern United States and other parts of the country are making a significant impact on communities, organizations, institutions, and economies. As a direct result of the demographic shift taking place, many new policies and programs are being developed and instituted at various community and state levels to facilitate integration. Change and integration are experienced differently between and among populations, so there is a crucial need for studies focused on: the experiences of refugee and immigrant newcomers in their settlement and integration, bridges between local longtime residents and newcomers; maintaining cultural diversity under resource constraints; and the opportunities associated with policy and political leadership.

The Change and Integration theme invites submissions by academics, professionals, practitioners, artists, and educators from multiple disciplines that positively contribute to the current discussions surrounding causes, consequences, and responses to living in a changing society, incorporating more refugees and immigrants. The goal of these sessions is to explore research and best practices that help us a) better understand the various contexts of integration, b) identify methods to preserve cultural differences within community environments, and c) identify effective intercultural tools for engaging new populations in the integration process.

We especially encourage submissions relating to this year’s conference theme: Embracing Differences ad Empowering Communities. This may include strategies that programs or communities have developed to: address issues of immigration and ways to incorporate dialogue or collaborations within communities; measure effects of federal, state and/or local policies in different community contexts; study the significance of place on integration of immigrants; and to explore the opportunities, vulnerabilities, uniqueness, and commonalities associated with urban and rural Latin@s/Latinxs/Hispanics and other immigrants; among many other possibilities. Proposals that illustrate positive outcomes or behavior changes are strongly encouraged.

The Cambio de Colores conference is a multistate conference about integration of immigrants in new destinations in the Midwest. It is a professional development opportunity that engages practitioners, researchers, and those working with immigrant communities in sharing experiences and knowledge that facilitate the integration of immigrants in new settlement areas.

The 19th annual conference will take place in St. Louis on June 17-20, 2020.

The following themes provide the conference framework:
1. Change and Integration
2. Civil Rights and Political Participation
3. Education
4. Entrepreneurship and Economic Development
5. Health
6. Youth Development

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