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Shruti Shah Celebrates Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

She reflects on LVHN’s commitment to diversity and fostering an inclusive environment

Shruti Shah, clinical staff pharmacist at LVHN

Shruti Shah is a clinical staff pharmacist at LVHN. She is an active member of the Asian/South Asian Colleagues Aligned as Resources for Engagement and Support (CARES) group.

The theme for this year’s Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) month, “Advancing Leaders Through Innovation,” holds particular significance for me. It highlights the problem-solving skills and creativity people bring to various fields. This month is a time to learn, appreciate and advocate for a more inclusive future where everyone feels safe, seen and celebrated in a diverse country like America.

Immigrating to the United States

As a second generation Asian Indian American, coming to the United States presented both opportunities and challenges. The rich heritage of my parents’ homeland, India, and their innovative spirit has been a cornerstone of our family. They juggled cultural traditions assimilating into a new country, all while building a successful future for themselves and their children. I believe this is a story my family shares with many. While I celebrate my Indian heritage, I’m also excited to learn more about the cultures, traditions and achievements of other AANHPI communities.

I also reflect on unique experiences of growing up in the United States. It’s important to keep pushing boundaries and making a positive impact while forging our unique path. Furthermore, the theme inspires me to think about my own contributions. How can I use my skills and experiences to make a positive impact in my community? I can continually learn about ways to advance health care surrounding medication utilization while minimizing safety risks and advocating for increased access to health care services for all underserved populations.

A time of reflection

My cultural heritage and professional experience have instilled a deeper appreciation for the interplay between tradition and progress, a dynamic crucial for fostering innovation. LVHN is a workplace that celebrates the richness of all colleagues’ backgrounds, creating diversity and equal opportunities. There is a sense of community and belonging fostered by colleagues.

Enjoying art this month

As we acknowledge the historical struggles and triumphs of AANHPI communities in the United States, we can continue learning about the rich tapestry of AANHPI experiences.

Being a visual learner and having a passion for arts and crafts, I will be celebrating the month by visiting museums and creating vibrant art. Museums give us the opportunity to recognize and appreciate the historical aspects of the subject, as well as how it relates and translates to the present of the culture and provide learning objectives.

An art form I would like to share is called Rangoli. It holds significant cultural and spiritual importance, and it is usually created during auspicious beginnings (e.g., Diwali) symbolizing various aspects of life like unity, harmony and growth. It is believed to bring good luck, prosperity and happiness. It is a community effort, so it also promotes social bonding and teamwork. Traditionally, it is a cultural heritage of women’s empowerment through creativity, skills and expression.

As many say, cooking is an art form that combines creativity, technique and passion. One of my favorite dishes is Pani Puri, also known as Golgappas or Puchkas. It is a popular Indian street food, an art form and a true representation of Indian cuisine's diversity and richness. It's a delicate balance of flavors, textures and presentation. It is crispy, hollow puris (bread) filled with a symphony of ingredients that provide a flavorful explosion of sweet, sour, spicy and tangy notes.

CARES groups

The Asian/South Asian CARES group at LVHN creates spaces for belonging, connection and development among colleagues from underrepresented groups. For me, being involved in the CARES group means an opportunity for professional development, networking, education, skills building and organization engagement while fostering cultural understanding. It can be a way to share perspectives with LVHN leadership and others. This is a great way to learn more about the communities LVHN serves as well as the holidays, festivals and values associated with them. It has been a rewarding experience to be part of the CARES group at LVHN and participate in the events and activities across the health network centering on diversity.


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