Thanks Mrs. Choephel!

By Gabriel Chiu
2012 Student Delegate

Ngawang Choephel, the filmmaker behind the piece Tibet in Song struck a cord with me not because I deeply understood what hardships he endured but because of the message he gave us after the screening.

A Tibetan teen who was deeply moved by the documentary asked “what can we do to help?”

This question is synonymous with the Asian American movement to gain acceptance in main stream media thereby being accepted as equals in America, what can we all do to help?

His answer was simple yet moving. I’m probably not quoting him correctly but I hope the message is the same.

We don’t need an army or international task force to change things, we just need all the individual Tibetans who escaped Tibet to care and to stand up and rise for Tibet, like his mother did for him. Something even he himself didn’t realize his mother had the passion and persistence to do.

His mother’s courage and drive, I believe helped him to realize that he too can make a difference.

And maybe that’s all we need, people who embody the fighting spirit of Mrs. Choephel to shake things up.

See the trailer for “Tibet in Song


Chosen from a competitive pool of undergraduate and graduate students, the Student Delegates are a small but diverse group of students who undergo Festival “boot camp.” Guided by Festival staff, students participate in a rigorous schedule of film screenings, discussions, and exclusive meetings with filmmakers and special guests. The program aims to cultivate the next generation of filmmakers, activists, educators, and community leaders. See all of the 2012 Student Delegates here and their blog!

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