Immigration: A Philadelphia Perspective

February 16, 2022 (Wednesday) / 5:00 pm6:30 pm

Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, 6th floor
Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Van Pelt Library, 3420 Walnut Street + Live Zoom Webinar

Immigration: A Philadelphia Perspective

Obed Arango

Executive Director, Centro de Cultura, Arte, Trabajo y Educación (CCATE)
Lecturer, MSW Program, School of Social Policy & Practice, University of Pennsylvania

Amy Eusebio

Director, Philadelphia Office of Immigrant Affairs

Mohannad Ghawanmeh

Executive Director, Al Bustan Seeds of Culture

Sarah Paoletti

Practice Professor Law; Director, Transnational Legal Clinic; University of Pennsylvania Law

The global scale of migration can often obscure local perspectives. This roundtable discussion brings together a cross-section of experts from city government and community-based organizations actively involved in immigration issues to broach the question of migration using our own immediate vantage point.

Cosponsored by the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Obed Arango in black and white in front of a abstract piece of artObed Arango, Founder and Executive Director of the Centro de Cultura, Arte, Trabajo y Educación (CCATE), is a Mexican journalist, anthropologist, visual artist, and filmmaker. Former faculty of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México and professor at Montgomery County Community College, in 2006 he created the radio program, Villa Inmigrante, which was broadcast on Mexico’s Radio Universidad de Guadalajara. From 1994-2001, he conducted an ethnography of Mexico City’s Central Square, with a particular focus on the Zapatista movement. In 2015 Obed was the recipient of the prestigious Dr. Orlando Costas Service Award from Eastern University. He was also Education Champion of the Year at the 2016 Hispanic Choice Awards. His current research focuses on the Villa Inmigrante in Norristown, PA.

Amy Eusebio in a turquoise topAmy Eusebio is a proud first-generation American, Afro-Latina, and daughter of Dominican immigrants. Eusebio joined the City of Philadelphia in 2018 as Municipal ID Program Director and was responsible for launching the PHL City ID. She has more than 15 years of experience working in non-profit social services. Eusebio’s previous roles included a focus on ensuring the programs she was part of were culturally responsive to the immigrant communities they were intended to serve. She completed her undergraduate and graduate education in social work, earning a bachelor’s degree from Temple University and a master’s from the University of Pennsylvania.

Mohannad Ghawanmeh standing in front of a brick wallMohannad Ghawanmeh is a scholar, cineaste, educator, and culturist intimately at large. A teacher of communication and media for twenty-five years, Mohannad’s instruction has centered on the cinema, for which he has also written, produced, acted, consulted, programmed, and curated. He is co-founder of the Twin Cities Arab Film Festival produced by Mizna. Mohannad curated the first editions of the Arab American National Museum’s film festival and the Minneapolis/St. Paul Italian Film Festival, as well as the series Melnitz Movies at University of California, Los Angeles. Mohannad is well awarded and published, having earned in 2020 his PhD from UCLA in Cinema and Media Studies. His research of the cinema decidedly examines such intersecting fields as governmentality, migration, nativity, religion, theater, music, literature, industrialization, and modernity typically in the mold of cultural history. Born to Palestinian refugees and an immigrant to the United States, Mohannad has also lived in Egypt, Japan, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia. Mohannad thrives on conjoining education and cultural production, connecting people and places, enriching and inspiring.

Sarah PaolettiSarah Paoletti founded and directs the Transnational Legal Clinic, the law school’s international human rights and immigration clinic. Students enrolled in the clinic grapple with international and comparative legal norms, working across borders, legal systems, cultures, and languages, representing individuals in immigration proceedings, and advocating on behalf of and in collaboration with organizations and individuals before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, the UN, and other fora. Paoletti’s research focuses on the intersection of human rights, migration, labor law, and access to justice. In addition to authoring numerous amicus briefs addressing international law in federal court litigation, she was the lead author of an in depth report, “Migrant Workers’ Access to Justice at Home: Nepal” ( June 2014), and co-author of “Migrant Workers’ Access to Justice at Home: Indonesia” (October 2013), both published as part of the Open Society Foundations’ Migrant Workers’ Access to Justice Series. Other recent scholarship includes: “Finding the Pearls When the World Is Your Oyster: Case and Project Selection in Clinic Design,” (Drexel Law Review, 2013); “Redefining Human Rights Lawyering Through the Lens of Critical Theory: Lessons for Pedagogy and Practice,” (Georgetown Journal of Poverty Law & Policy, 2011) (co-author).