Dear Friends & Family,
For the past 11 years, the UCI-Tibet Initiative (UCI-TI) has been welcoming Visiting Buddhist Scholars from monastic institutions in India to the beautiful campus of the University of California, Irvine. 29 wonderful Visiting Scholars to be exact. UCI-TI was a 10-week language immersion program that we founded in partnership with former UCI leadership as our humble contribution to His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama’s vision of modernizing the education system in Tibetan Buddhist monastic institutions. It has been an extremely gratifying journey.
Then, in 2020 and 2021, UCI-TI was forced to indefinitely shut down as our community, our partners in India, along with the world, dealt with the COVID-19 global pandemic. However, during this time, we’ve been hard at work.
Today, I am pleased to announce that we are opening a new chapter in this journey by starting Kamalashila Initiative (KI). During this transition phase, KI will operate as a fiscally sponsored project of the Ngari Institute Foundation (NIF). We are very grateful for NIF's support while we take the proper steps to building a solid organizational foundation.
Just as UCI-TI did, KI’s Visiting Scholars Program, will bring Buddhist scholars from monastic institutions in India to the US for an intensive 10-week ESL (English as a Second Language) course, in partnership with the University of California, Irvine. This immersion and cultural exchange program offers KI Visiting Scholars a unique opportunity to improve their English language skills and gain exposure to western academic life. In return, Visiting Scholars offer the local community insights on how to enrich their spiritual and emotional wellbeing through meditation practice and the cultivation of altruism in engaging cultural exchange. We are also very excited to announce that KI aims to invite 3 Visiting Scholars to the UCI campus this Summer quarter of 2022!
However, after many long years of sustained funding from UCI, this support is no longer available to fund the program. As such, I hope that you will consider supporting us. If you feel compelled to, please make a donation by clicking HERE. Your donation will be a tax-deductible gift and will directly fund the Visiting Scholars Program for costs such as tuition, housing, and meals during the Visiting Scholars' upcoming 10-week stay. Our current goal is to raise $10,000 for Summer 2022.
If you are unable to donate, please consider helping me spread the word by sharing this message and link to our donation page.
With much gratitude and respect,
Founder, Kamalashila Initiative