This Karen refugee was just selected as a 2017 Bush Fellow. Hsajune Dyan | The Refugee Center Online Hall of Fame

Hsajune Dyan is a Doctorate Student at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.
Hsajune Dyan is a Doctorate Student at Bethel University in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Bush Fellow: Hsajune Dyan has been selected as one of the Bush Fellow Candidates.

At 17 years old, Dyan first came to the United States with his family as a Karen Refugee and resettled in the state of Minnesota. After witnessing the struggle refugees and immigrants face to navigate the school system or advocate for themselves, Dyan was aspired to be the change he wished to see.

Dyan got involved in education and pursued a career working for the St. Paul School District in Minnesota. As a Karen Cultural Specialist at the St. Paul Public Schools district headquarters, Dyan hoped to use his grant from the Bush Fellow to finish his Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) degree in leadership, strengthen his community and make his interest in education equity become a reality.

The Refugee Center Hall of Fame

Dyan has been named as the Refugee Center Hall of Fame for his work and dedication towards refugees in his community.

Dyan does everything from volunteering in his community, facilitating advisory and parent meeting to using his linguistics skills to serve others. Dyan speaks more than three languages including Burmese, Karen, Thai, and English. Dyan will be able to use his skills in the state that is home to the largest Karen community in the country (Karen Organization of Minnesota).

Bush Fellow awards up to $100,000 to extraordinary leaders who make a difference in their community.

Not only is the opportunity to be selected as a Bush Fellow candidate a beginning for Dyan, it is itself a major breakthrough. Dyan is also on board of the Karen Organization of Minnesota.  Coming from an underrepresented community in Education, Dyan plays a major role of leadership not only for his fellow Karen refugees and immigrants but for all the refugees and immigrants across the nation.

Refugee students bring different knowledge and perspective to their schools. It is through having individuals like Dyan where schools and other organizations across the country come to understand the value refugees bring to school.

Whitney Bak, a content specialist from Bethel University claims that according to Dr. Efe Agbamu, a St. Paul Publis Schools Superintendent; Dyan will become the first Karen licensed school administrator in the state of Minnesota when he earns his degree.

Refugees shaking hands

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About Hall of Fame
The Refugee Center Online Hall of Fame features refugees and immigrants from around the United States who are making a difference in their communities. At the Refugee Center Online, we believe newcomers make our country a better place. The individuals we feature show exactly that - they are examples of how immigrants and refugees contribute to our country. If you are interested in being featured or would like to nominate an individual to be featured in our Hall of Fame, email: