I remember clearly the first time someone used the term “hapa”: I was a freshman, waiting for Campus Cruiser in front of New/North, when a random guy asked me if I was hapa.
Not knowing what it meant, I asked for a clarification. He told me that hapa is Hawaiian
for half—it’s traditionally used as a term to refer to people who are half-Asian and half-
Marissa Hui, a senior communications major, knows the intricacies of this term well. She’s the president of HapaSC, an organization on-campus dedicated to exploring what it means to be of mixed race, and the exploration of identity that comes with the territory.
HC: Tell me about HapaSC.
Marissa: HapaSC has been around campus for about 10 years. It started originally as a club
specifically for students that fit the traditional meaning of “hapa:” half-Asian and half-white.
Since then, it’s become an all-encompassing club for students of multiracial, multiethnic, and
Our mission is to create a diverse community where people can explore their identity.
Specifically we deal with a lot of topics about being mixed raced and try to cater to that student
population. Sometimes students who are mixed race don’t identify completely with [single-
culture] groups, or want to be able to explore their backgrounds within one group and not have to
sacrifice one group for another.
HC: What kinds of events does HapaSC put on? What does the club do?