Leading into the 21st century, the future of Jainism will lie in the hands of the youth. It will be the youth’s mission to preserve Jainism’s rich heritage and insure its growth for future generations.

-The First YJA Convention: Chicago, IL 1994

Convention

YJA conventions are organized and hosted every two years for over 600 Jain youths, aged 14–29, from across the globe. Each convention is organized by a team of 30-35 individuals – students and young professionals – from across the United States. The goal of each convention is to inspire Jain youth to understand life experiences through the lens of Jainism.

YJA conventions are divided into three main tracks:

  •   High School
  •   College
  •   Jain Networking Forum (“JNF”) (ages 21-29)

Attendees are able to select their track based on their age and current status in school. With the three separate tracks we are able to support each phase in life from the teenage years to a young graduate career. Each convention provides Daytime Programming and Social events to tie together the theme, while creating lifelong friendships between attendees with unique, memorable experiences. By interacting with attendees of all ages, youth will learn how Jainism is a source of support at each phase from the teenage social network to a young graduate’s career.

Convention2During the convention, attendees have the opportunity to connect, to learn, and to share their thoughts with one another on a variety of subjects. Sessions, speakers, and new friends will all come together to create lifelong friendship and a unique, memorable experience. Through a variety of fun, innovative, and interactive programming experiences, attendees will engage in wide ranging activities and sessions related to atma (the soul), developing leadership, and creating a better community.

Daytime sessions for youth are hosted by inspirational speakers, who keep Jainism and its values alive in the hearts and minds of youth. In addition, each convention has participation from Pathshala groups from California to Massachusetts. We are also honored to have monks and scholars, some from India, speak at our conventions. We plan a diverse range of sessions suitable for those attending their first convention as well as those attending their sixth.

JNF programming takes it one step further, aiming to foster professional and relationship development. Each JNF programming allows attendees the opportunity to meet similar minded individuals through interactive sessions and unique social events, while creating lasting connections with individuals that are successful in a variety of careers.

Each attendee’s registration fee includes registration for the convention, hotel accommodations, meals, and more. Delicious Jain and vegan food is served during the convention, including a variety of cuisines from Mexican to Italian to Indian. No onions, potatoes, garlic, root vegetables, meats, or animal byproducts are distributed or used to prepare the meals. Additionally, we have a 24/7 “Hospitality Suite” where youth can stop by to grab a light, healthy snack between sessions or events.

Convention3We expect that all of our attendees will conduct themselves in a polite, professional manner. We also enforce a strict dress code during each convention in order to foster a professional image. Our dress code is use to promote a more productive, enjoyable social environment, while maintaining the high level of respect for speakers, for which our organization is known for.

Volunteers are always necessary to make our convention successful. Any amount of time, from four hours to the length of the entire convention, will help make everything run smoothly. For more information on volunteering, or on our biennial conventions, please e-mail us at info@yja.org. We look forward to seeing you at our next YJA convention!

 

Sponsorship

YJA is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, parented by Federation of Jain Association in North America (“JAINA“).

We are always looking for sponsors for future YJA conventions, as a business or as an individual, and we welcome donations of all sizes.

For more information, please contact us at fundraising@yja.org.

Past YJA Conventions

Year Convention City      Theme
1994 First Chicago, IL “Region and Culture: Learning For Tomorrow”
1996 Second San Francisco, CA “Jainism: Integrating Philosophy & Practice”
1998 Third Houston, TX “Jainism: Back to Basics”
2000 Fourth Los Angeles, CA “Four Day’s Journey into The Self”
2002 Fifth Mahwah, NJ “Walking the Path of Jainism”
2004 Sixth Santa Clara, CA “YJAin? To See, To Know, To Realize”
2006 Seventh Stamford, CT “Jain Evolution: Making Our Life Our Message”
2008 Eighth Lincolnshire, IL “Generation Jain: Jainism Your Way”
2010 Ninth New Brunswick, NJ “Inspire. Connect. Do the Jain Thing.”
2012 Tenth Tampa, FL “iJain: Evolution of a Mind”
2014 Eleventh Arlington, VA   “Young Jains: Today’s Learners, Tomorrow’s Leaders”
 2016  Twelfth  TBD  TBD