Scholarships and Award Winners

Media advisory on coverage of Indianapolis FedEx facility shooting (April 16, 2021)

The South Asian Journalists Association and the Asian American Journalists Association are saddened by the shooting at a FedEx facility in Indianapolis that left at least eight dead, many of them reported to have been Sikh. There is a history of violence against the Sikh community in the United States that stems in part from a lack of education and cultural awareness. Here are a few style and context guidelines for news organizations reporting on this tragedy:

Style

1. Sikh is pronounced like "pick," but replace the "p" with an "s." According to the Sikh Coalition, when European colonialists entered South Asia, they elongated the short "i" to make the word sound more like "seek." While both pronunciations are used in modern English, the pronunciation from the original Punjabi is preferable.

2. Many Sikhs, both men and women, maintain a physical identity that consists of a dastaar (a turban). Other articles of faith include keeping a beard and/or wearing a steel or iron religious bangle called a kara.

3. The faith is called Sikhism; the people are referred to as Sikh.

4. The house of worship is a temple called a Gurudwara (which means house of God) pronounced: "Goord-wa-ra."

History/ context

1. There are more than 25 million Sikhs worldwide, with approximately 500,000 living in the United States. Sikhism is a monotheistic religion and was founded in the 15th century.

2. The last mass attack on the community in the U.S. took place in 2012 when a gunman entered a Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, a suburb of Milwaukee, and began firing. The rampage left six dead and was declared an act of domestic terrorism by federal authorities.

Media contact:

Sabrina Malhi, SAJA social media coordinator Email: communications@SAJA.org

Sources provided by Sikh Coalition/ Simran Jeet Singh

For more information and details on covering the Sikh community, the Sikh Coalition has compiled an extensive reporter's guide: https://www.sikhcoalition.org/resources/sikhism-reporters-guide

Scholarships and Internships

Internship Fund: SAJA is proud to offer internship support for those who have secured internships for the summer of 2021.

Scholarships: SAJA scholarships assist in helping journalism students meet a portion of the surging tuition fees and costs at North American universities.

Please see these pages for more details on how to apply: Scholarships and Internship Fund.

Deadline is April 22 for both programs! Winners will be notified in late May.

NEW PROGRAM: Mentorship!

SAJA is pleased to launch a new mentorship program this year. Five mentees will be selected to be paired with five experienced mentors, based on interests and career goals. 

The goal will be to foster long-term professional relationships, for the benefit of our members and the industry!

More information on how to sign up here.

International Women's Day: Masuma Ahuja's new book 'Girlhood'

On March 8, SAJA Board Member Masuma Ahuja spoke with member and freelancer Lakshmi Gandhi about her new book Girlhood: Teens Around The World In Their Own Voices, what it was like working girls from around the world, and the ins and outs of writing a book as a journalist. 


Misinformation and the Coronavirus

On March 4, SAJA Board Member Karen Mahabir spoke with BuzzFeed senior reporter Jane Lytvynenko about how to talk to friends and relatives who spread misinformation about the coronavirus, among other topics about misinformation and disinformation.

Farmers' Protests Briefing

On February 9, 2021, SAJA held a background briefing via Zoom on the ongoing farmers' protests in Delhi. Panelists highlighted the issues surrounding the protests and discussed what journalists have been dealing with amid censorship, threats and arrests. Watch the recording below! 

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Board Members: Farnoush Amiri, Jennifer Chowdhury, Aishwarya Kumar, John Laxmi, Karen Mahabir, Sabrina Malhi, Nidhi Prakash, Ali Rizvi, Mythili Sampathkumar, Pia Sarkar and Mihir Zaveri. 

Advisors: Anusha Shrivastava, Prerana Thakurdesai and Nina Sen

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