• MEI received a major grant from the Arkansas Humanities Council / National Endowment for the Humanities for Phase I of the Marshallese Oral History Project.  MEI completed 50 interviews and transcribed and translated 10 of them. Interviews include stories about World War II, life on Majuro, the early years of V7AB, women’s roles in society, nuclear testing’s impact, traditional canoe-building, clans, and handicrafts. Visit our Vimeo page to watch the 10 interviews. This project is on-going. If you want to share your story, please contact MEI.

      Shaine Benkim












Wide shot

  • Nuclear Remembrance Day

On Feb. 28, 2014, MEI hosted Nuclear Remembrance Day 2014: Reflect. Honor. Educate. at the Clinton Presidential Center in Little Rock, Arkansas. More than 250 Marshallese and non-Marshallese community members attended the event. Among the distinguished speakers: Rongelap Sen. Kenneth Kedi, Ambassador to the US Charles Paul, Consul-General Carmen Chong-Gum, Columbia University Fellow Dr. Jessica A. Schwartz, Columbia University Law Prof. Michael Gerrard, Rongelapese survivor Neisen Laukon, and MEI’s Benetick Kabua Maddison. Rongelapese women performed, members from Bikini Atoll sang the Bikinian Anthem, and a video by Kathy Jetnil-Kijner was shown. MEI’s Tina Stege hosted the event.

  • National Speaking Engagements

    • Rongelapese nuclear survivor and MEI Advisory Board member Neisen Laukon, has

      Neisen 3

      Ms. Neisen Laukon speaks at Nuclear Remembrance Day 2014 about the impact of nuclear testing on the Rongelapese.

      spoken several times providing her first hand account of suffering from the effects of nuclear contamination. She has spoken in Little Rock, New York City, Salem, and via webinar. Among her many speaking engagements as an Assistant Professor of Music at UCLA, Dr. Jessica Schwartz spoke about the human impact of testing at the U.S. Institute for Peace in Washington, DC, in Sept. 2014 at an event sponsored by the Embassy of Kazakhstan and the Arms Control Association. Schwartz addressed representatives from several executive agencies including, Dept. of State, Dept. of Defense, and Dept. of Energy. Ms. Tina Stege, MEI’s international liaison, spoke about climate change and its impact on a panel with RMI Foreign Minister Tony DeBrum at the Peace and Planet Summit in New York City in April 2015 and gave a joint presentation with Marshallese poet and climate activist Kathy Jetnil-Kijner at the New York Natural History Museum about the impact of climate change. In the fall 2015, Tina addressed the United Nations as a representative of Civil Society, where she talked about the impact of nuclear testing on the Marshallese and climate change.

Dr. Jessica A. Schwartz speaks at the U.S. Institute for Peace about the impact of nuclear testing.






  • Partnerships & Affiliations

    • MEI has worked with Empowering Pacific Islander Communities, Nuclear Age Peace Foundation, Peace and Planet, White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, UCLA Music Department’s Voice Challenge & Conference committee, and Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum on issues ranging from civic responsibility to health to nuclear nonproliferation and awareness.

Dr. Jessica A. Schwartz, left, and Dr. April L. Brown, right, with at a Springdale Rotary Luncheon.

Dr. Jessica A. Schwartz, left, and Dr. April L. Brown, right, with Springdale Rotary President at a Luncheon.