Daytime Programming

Welcome to Daytime Programming at the 2014 Young Jains of America (YJA) Convention! This convention will connect nearly 700 youth from across the globe. Highlighting the daytime sessions will be inspirational speakers who keep Jainism and its values alive in the hearts and minds of youth. In addition, this year will be the first time YJA introduces Jain Academic Bowl (JAB). Get excited for some diverse sessions on Jain education, interfaith, lifestyle, college/careers, debates, games, and much more!


Convention Keynote Speakers


Nimesh 'Nimo' Patel

Nimesh Patel

Keynote Speaker

From Wharton Business School to Wall Street, to fame and fortune as a MTV Rap star, at some point along Nimo's journey he realized that he was walking a path of suffering and that the only path to light was through selfless service to others and his own internal purification. In his mid-twenties, he abandoned the limelight and found himself meditating in the foothills of the Himalayas. There, an inner voice nudged him to radically simplify his life and find his purpose in service to others. He moved to the Gandhi Ashram in India and dedicated himself to the children in the surrounding slums. Fast-forward to April 2012: Nimo and a dance troupe of sixteen of "his kids" toured the world with "Ekatva" -- a performance whose ultimate message was Oneness. Read more about Nimo's inspired journey of transforming a motley crew of kids from the slums into global emissaries of unity: A Rap Star's Journey With 16 Slum Kids

Nimo has recently embarked on a project to bridge selfless service, love and music. He calls it Empty Hands Music. Check out this video which captures the spirit of what Nimo’s Empty Hands Music is all about.


Sonal Shah

Keynote Speaker

Sonal Shah is Professor of Practice and the founding Executive Director of the Beeck Center for Social Impact & Innovation. Sonal, an economist and entrepreneur, has spent her career focused on actionable innovation in the public and private sectors. Most recently, she was the Deputy Assistant to the President and founding Director of the White House Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation.

She spent seven years at the U.S. Department of Treasury where she was an international economist working on timely development issues, including post-conflict development in Bosnia, Asian financial crisis, and poverty reduction in Africa. She then went to Goldman Sachs and Google while simultaneously co-founded Indicorps, a nonprofit building a new generation of socially conscious global leaders. She is a senior fellow at the Case Foundation and the Center for American Progress. Sonal serves on the Board of Social Finance, Inc. and the Washington Area Women's Foundation.

Sonal Shah


Daytime Sessions

A Healthy Lifestyle: Ascetism A Jain Paradigm for Self-Empowerment - Releasing the Inner Lion Advocacy Among the Dharmic Faiths Ahimsa in Our Times: Leaving Our Children a Liveable Planet
Ahimsa, Self-Compassion, and the Mentally Strong Leader Ahimsak Lifestyle Alternate Post-College Opportunities Panel An Interfaith Dialogue
Animal Rights FAQ Application of Jain Karma Philosophy in Daily Life Applied Ahimsa: Countering Climate Change Applying Jain Ethics in a Modern Society
Bridging the Gap Bringing the Interfaith Movement to Your College Campus Business and Finance Panel But You Gotta Have Faith
Campus Organizing 101 College Prep Panel Cooking Jain 101 Current Ethics Challenging Jains in North America
Desi Chaat: Playing with Manufacturing Discovering Your Inner Changemaker Environmental Justice in Jainism Everyday Choices that Lead to Bold Transformations
Explain Being Jain Finding the Activist Within: Youth Political Engagement in Today's Society Five Steps to a Healthy, Happy, and Wholesome Life Freedom
Harmony of Religious Diversity How to Be a Good Leader How to Not Be a Bad Person I Went to the Temple - Now What?
I'm a J-A-I-N, Jane Doe, No Relation - How to Explain Jainism to Americans Interfaith Cooperation and Its Role in Our Community Interfaith Leadership in a Time of Global Religious Conflict Interfaith Youth Core Panel
It's the Thought That Counts Jain Academic Bowl Finals Jain Academic Bowl Semi-Finals Jain Dialogue
Jain Diet and Food- Holistic Approach to Spirituality, Health, and Ecology Jain Potpourri! Jain Rituals Jain Stories: Writing and Talking About Being Jain
Jain Universe Jainism IS Social Justice (or Can We Make it So in the 21st Century?) Jainism, Ecology, and Kicking Butt in Antarctica Jainism: Ancient vs. Modern
Know Your Body and Food Kshmapana In Our Times - Jainism's Gift of Forgiveness to the World Law and Policy Panel Leveraging Social Media
Making Jainism Right for You Meaning in Navkar Mantra Medicine and Healthcare Panel Modern Jain Values: Social Practices vs. Traditional Rituals
Modern-Day Slavery and Human Trafficking Negotiating Across Differences Nirjara: A Workshop on Karma Nutritional Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet and Ethical Research Methods
Our Experiments with Truth Overall Impact of Jain Dharma in Life's Journey Plant Based Nutrition for Health and Fitness Power of Gratitude
Project Jain Q & A with the JAINA Director of Education Relevance of Jainism in the 21st Century Right the Wrongs in 50 Minutes or Less
Seva and Social Entrepreneurship Sharpening Your Sathiyo Skills Social Justice 101 Staying Cool in School- Balancing High School Pressures with Jain Values
Suburbs to the Big Campus: Balancing College Pressures with Jain Values The Power of Awareness The Purpose of Religion: The Truth Behind Jainism's Existence The Relativity of Religion
Understanding Modern-day Slavery Unspoken Taboos: Breaking Down the Barriers Unspoken Taboos: Taken to the Next Level Use of Memory to Achieve Permanent Happiness
Veganism 101 Veganism: A Jain Community & Societal Imperative Wake Up: A Workshop What Kind of Leader Are You?
Who Am I? YJA Gives Back Yoga for Spiritual Health


Priyal Gandhi Shikhar Shah Harsha Nahata Akash Shah Hetali Lodaya Kinari Shah Neeraj Gandhi

Daytime Programming Team

Your 2014 Daytime Progamming Committee Co-Leads are Priyal Gandhi (VA), Shikhar Shah (IL), and Harsha Nahata (MI).

Working with them are Akash Shah (NC), Hetali Lodaya (NC), Kinari Shah (MI), and Neeraj Gandhi (VA).

Have a question? Please contact [email protected]. See you in July!