Bhutanese refugees

Photo of Damber Subba
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU public radio

Officer Damber Subba’s first shift Monday afternoon was patrolling familiar territory: Akron’s North Hill neighborhood. Here's more on the first-ever refugee sworn into Akron’s police force.

Like the other 11 rookie police officers sworn in Friday night, Damber Subba wore a deep blue uniform, his posture erect, steps precise, face serious. But before the evening was over, he was a half-dozen layers deep in brightly colored scarves and garlands of flowers.

photo of Dhan Tumbapoo
MADDIE MCGARVEY / HUFFINGTON POST

Akron owes its only population growth since the turn of the century to a kingdom on the other side of the Earth. As many as 5,000 Nepali people have made their way to the city during the last decade.

It’s been a dramatic change for people who had held onto their culture during centuries in Bhutan and decades in refugee camps in Nepal.

 

Tiffany Stacy and Paulina Subba
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU

Editor's Note: This is the final installment in our week-long series looking at the impact of the Bhutanese refugees on Akron. It also is part of a collaboration with the Huffington Post.

Hindu Teej festival
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU

Editors's note: This is the first report in a week-long series WKSU is doing on the integration of Bhutanese-Nepali refugees, who began their migration to Akron a decade ago. Tomorrow, we’ll explore the fusion of music that is emerging.

Bhutanese Community Association of Akron
M.L. SCHULTZE / WKSU public radio

The University of Akron has created eight new scholarships for members of the Bhutanese-refugee community. WKSU’s M.L. Schultze has more from the announcement at this weekend’s annual Bhutanese festival.

Thousands of Bhutanese have come to Akron by way of refugee camps in Nepal over the last decade, and more have arrived via “secondary migration” from other U.S. cities. University of Akron President Matthew Wilson says the scholarships will help enrich education for non-refugee students as well.

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