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MyStory Griot Project: Prasika Bhattarai

April 12, 2021 | Prasika Bhattarai, UWF Student |

The MyStory Griot Project is an initiative of CASSH Workgroup on Race, Ethnicity and Belonging.

As a Nepali citizen, I want to share my experience of how the words of my advisor have changed my views of race in the world. I was the president of the worldwide organization Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) at my high school, where people of all races and backgrounds come together to achieve one goal: gain leadership skills in order to form one disclosure community. 

During African-American History Month, I participated in a seminar at my school where my FBLA advisor spoke on how African American leaders such as Martin Luther King, Jr. and Rosa Parks have shaped the history of the United States today. Attending this seminar meant a great deal to me because I had been raised to be aware of the traditions and customs of all cultures, so I could be more attentive to the social issues occurring in the modern world. 

At the seminar, my FBLA advisor said something so alarming that I still cannot stop thinking about it to this day. From what I remember, she stated, “It hurts to see that our young people in

the African-American community spread more hate to people of their own color than they do to others.” This statement really opened up my eyes regarding how the Nepali community treats each other as well. I came to the United States when I was around five years old. I have realized that young Nepali children would rather try to form relationships with others who are not from Nepal. I have always wondered why. Maybe it is because they are already so used to their own culture that they would rather meet people from other backgrounds. Or maybe it is because they

are beginning to lose their respect for people from their own country since they are so used to the American culture. Either way, it is a form of hatred against their own kind. For example, when I was in middle school, my Nepali best friend, whom I had known since elementary school, suddenly started ignoring me after a new American student was introduced to our class. The times when I did talk to her, it was very awkward since her style of speaking and what she talked about had drastically changed. This change must have occurred because of the type of people she now spent time with. 

Another example includes wars in Nepal. There are riots almost every day in the streets of Nepal involving people who are against the political system. In these riots, a large number of people get attacked, burned, and even killed. But when these people get involved with the politics of America, they act peaceful, wanting to gain the approval of people who are not Nepali. This action shows that many Nepali people have more hatred toward people of their own kind than they do toward others from different parts of the world. 

I hope that the current generation will learn to treat all people with the equal amount of respect no matter the gender, race, ethnicity, or political beliefs. I understand that Nepali people may hate other Nepali people, but that is no reason to put one race above another.

This story is part of the CASSH MyStory Griot Project.

The MyStory Griot Project offers a space for UWF students, faculty and staff to share race and reconciliation conversations in a comfortable space. The stories support the need for understanding race, ethnicity and belonging. 

The project pairs the tradition of oral stories with the more dominant written culture. It is supported by the UWF College of Arts, Social Sciences and Humanities' Workgroup of Race, Ethnicity and Belonging. 

Visit for upcoming stories. 

To learn more about the MyStory Griot Project, visit