Our conference this year is underscored by the fact that our current moment is a snapshot of a larger context. As Asian Americans, we are interested in connecting current events and social trends with past cultural and political movements and the legacy of Asians in America. With not only the pandemic, but police brutality, natural disasters, and revolutions occurring worldwide, we find ourselves looking for ways to make sense of ourselves and the world around us. While the past is the reason for our present, the future is dictated by our actions today, and as students and as citizens of the world, we want to move beyond passive understanding and have an active hand in shaping our future.
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Jerry Won is the host and producer of Dear Asian Americans, a podcast and video interview show whose mission is to celebrate, support, and inspire fellow Asian Americans through immigrant origin and identity journey storytelling. He is also the CEO of The Podcast Firm, a podcast production company, and Just Like Media, an Asian American storytelling company. Prior to media, Jerry was a strategy consultant at Accenture, an account director at WeWork, and led sales and marketing efforts at various companies. He holds a BS from the University of Southern California and an MBA from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. He resides in Southern California with his wife, son, and daughter. Learn more about Jerry and connect with him here!
Alana J. Webster and Jacklyn Chung-Young are self-described “forward-thinking feminists” hailing from the sunny coasts of California. On their podcast Black and Yellow, they explore the complex experiences of being Black or Asian in modern-day America. Each week, they bring in-depth research, personal experience, and most importantly, an intersectional lens to talk about issues relating to feminism, gender, race, and much more. In this workshop, Alana and Jacklyn will discuss the importance of talking about these issues, their experiences on the podcast, and their advice on how to create space for these conversations in everyday life.
Asian Businesses across New York City have been negatively affected by Covid-19 and are struggling to survive. How are our Asian Businesses going to recover? Send Chinatown Love, founded during the midst of the pandemic, works to combat this by providing support to Asian Businesses across the city as they recover. In this workshop, Chloe and Marcia will speak about their organization’s unique initiatives to support Asian businesses while also prompting us with questions for discussion on our individual responsibility to aid Asian businesses.
Community members and allies are invited to an hour long Asian Prisoner Support Committee political education workshop. In this workshop, you’ll learn about the impact of community organizing, accountability, community mobilied in the fight against Southeast Asian deportations, the Southeast Asian migration to school to prison to deportation pipeline, and the intergenerational trauma that stems from displacement rooted in colonization and US imperialism. Hear from impacted community members about their experience of migration, incarceration, redemption, and their continual fight to stop Southeast Asian communities who are now facing another form of displacement through the deportation machine.
What is cultural organizing? How can artists and cultural work contribute to community power and social change? We explore these questions and draw from our own experiences of working with various cultural collectives in New York City over the years, specifically with the Chinatown Art Brigade, The W.O.W. Project, and Asian/Pacific/American Voices: A COVID-19 Public Memory Project. Our workshop will be interactive and invite participants who wish to learn more about the intersections of storytelling, memory work, and direct action.
Since late 2020, we have seen the largest general strike in world history emerge from India. Working class communities have joined in solidarity, from trade unionists to students to farmers to stand up to agribusiness. But what exactly is behind this uprising? How do major agricultural corporations contribute to the exploitation of the everyday worker? And how has the pandemic brought movements forward for a more equitable world? Join this workshop to learn about the rich histories of the Farmers Protest and how it has made waves from Punjab to New York City.
Let’s talk about our collective history—the past, the present and the future. Hear from Asian Americans from all walks of life on why Asian American history needs to be taught in schools. Other states like California and Illinois have highlighted this in recent weeks—let’s bring the party to NY!
Break Time - grab a snack and stretch!
David S. Roh is the Associate Professor of English and the Director of Digital Matters at the University of Utah. He is the author of Minor Transpacific: Triangulating American, Japanese, and Korean Fictions, Illegal Literature, and perhaps most notably, Techno-Orientalism. Techno-Orientalism describes a phenomenon of imagining Asians as hyper-technological, and yet in need of Western saving. David S. Roh will discuss the ways techno-orientalism has manifested in modern forms of media and speak on the implications of these stereotypes.
The unheard voices. While the Vietnamese American community has fought within the AAPI and southeast community for more inclusive discussion about culture and identity, Vietnamese indigenous identity is never or rarely brought up. Vietnamese indigenous identity is hardly recognized in Vietnam along with the struggles of trying to be seen in Western countries such as the United States. Join Abi and Phun from the Voice of the highlands as they will discuss about indigenous identity history, social justice, advocacy and the mission of their organization as they worked on storytelling along with providing useful civic engagement resources.
How is care work practiced through forms and processes of media-making? For example, the zine Asian American Feminist Antibodies: Care in the Time of Coronavirus by the Asian American Feminist Collective, used different digital platforms to build and deepen relationships for ongoing solidarities. In this interactive workshop, participants will be introduced to a brief media history of feminist solidarities as well as contemporary media projects, campaigns, and practices for abolition. We will also discuss how media practices shape our feminist politics.
We will discuss and examine the history of the model minority myth and how it has shaped the relationships between the Asian community and other people of color, specifically the Black community. We will examine topics such as the Chinese Exclusion Act, the immigration act, why the LA Riots happened, and how Asian x Black communities have stood in solidarity with each other throughout history. The first half will be lecture based and the second half will be discussion based.
Join our workshops committee member Lauren Khine as she bakes Matcha Brochi (Brownie-Mochi)! Feel free to bake along, pretend you’re watching The Great British Bake-Off (minus the competitive aspect and expert bakers), or simply to share your experiences from the conference. Regardless of your reason for joining, this breakout room activity will be a safe space for open conversation and anyone who’d like to try their hand at baking! Please refer to the following document for ingredients and equipment if you’re planning on baking along:Recipe!
Although adopted in 2019, New York City will start using a ranked choice voting system in the upcoming 2021 primary election. But how does ranked choice voting work and what are its implications on democracy and voting rights? Join Lillian Gee, the VP of Membership with OCA Asian Pacific American Advocates-NY, in this very special breakout session to learn more! The OCA - Asian Pacific American Advocates is a national non-profit civil rights organization promoting and protecting the political, economic, and cultural rights of Asian Pacific Americans in America for 50 years!
Join our Public Relations and Events Co-chair Taryn Chung in this casual arts workshop! With 30 minutes on the clock and a handful of prompts for guidance (or be a maverick and go off script), you will have the opportunity to create art in any form (painting, dance, music composition, edible masterpiece, cartoon, etc.) in a comfortable environment with new friends! Come with art materials or just come for the company and jams, all are welcome!
Film is all around us and plays an important role in shaping our worldly views and identities. As an art form used to explore narratives, tell stories, and incite social and political change, film is a powerful creative outlet for both a content creator and viewer. In this workshop, we will be viewing films and animations created by talented college and high school students to discover and relate to topics ranging from personal narratives to current AAPI issues such as AAPI allyship. In hopes of fostering new connections and a larger awareness, there will also be open discussions between the creatives and audience.
Christine Chen is a big sister life coach to Asian Americans who are searching for a deeper fulfillment and understanding of self to move forward with purpose. Through her past experience in working in the community as a producer at Wong Fu Productions, her podcasts (xoxo Christine and Perfectly Imperfect), and numerous events focusing on real conversations around vulnerability, Christine is focusing on shedding the stigma of mental health for Asians everywhere. In her workshop, Christine will talk about identity, intergenerational trauma, and mental health tools for our community.
As we reflect on snapshots of our past and look forward to snapshots in our future, it will be important to have tools for community care and resilience as we embark on our journey. Whether it is healing from past traumas or coping with stressors in the present day, there are various tools that we can add to our “toolbox” to be better prepared for any situation that may come our way. Join us in this engaging workshop to experience hands-on activities to promote greater self-compassion, resilience, and growth in ourselves and our communities. Note: Please be prepared to have something to write on (paper, computer, phone, etc.) during the workshop!
After the election of 2020, some many are left confused on why does the vietnamese community overwhelmingly support trump? It was reported that the Vietnamese community was the only asian american community that voted for trump overwhelming compared to other asian american communities. But why? What’s the reason? Join Cookie Duong and Oanh Tran from the interpreter as they will discuss and share their personal opinion on the viet community along with the mission of the organization as they release and inform media coverage on recent political news for the Vietnamese community.
Break Time - grab a snack and stretch!
Asian Fusion Dance is a club at NYU that promotes creativity and cultural expression by introducing individuals to the unique and diverse styles of Asian dance.
The performance contains two dance pieces performed by Cynthia Li, Shari Wang, and Grace Xu. The first dance is called 醉 (Zuì), which translates to "Drunk" and speaks of reminiscence and nostalgia for the beauty of days gone by. The second dance is a fusion of modern and Chinese classical dance, called 左手指月 (Zuǒshǒu zhǐ yuè), which translates to "Reaching Towards the Moon." The song is from a popular Chinese drama called "Ashes of Love," and expresses the feeling of loving someone even through the hardest times, in this life and the next.
Krystie Yen (she/her) is a creative activist and social entrepreneur on a mission to make the world a more inclusive and joyful place. Named one of the “Most Influential Asian Americans of 2017,” she is the co-founder of Slant’d, an AAPI storytelling collective, and the Content & Community Lead at Tia, a next-gen women’s health platform. Krystie has been featured on TEDx, People, Talks at Google, CBS News, PBS, and more. She recently moved back to Los Angeles to spend time with her mom and their newly adopted dog, Hunter. She holds a dual degree in Business and Public Health from UC Berkeley.
Renee Tajima-Peña, an Academy Award-nominated filmmaker and professor of Asian American Studies at UCLA, is the series producer of PBS’s groundbreaking docu-series Asian Americans. Her previous films include Who Killed Vincent Chin?, My America...or Honk if You Love Buddha and No Más Bebés. Her films have screened at international film festivals such as the Cannes Film Festival, Hong Kong Film Festival, SXSW, Sundance Film Festival, and the Whitney Biennial.