Asian American and Pacific Islander Conference

The Cross Cultural Center’s Asian American & Pacific Islander Issues Conference (AAPIICON), a one-day conference which is to be held April 30th 9am-6pm in the Student Community Center. The theme is Revolutionary Love. Love and self-love are an act of self-preservation and political warfare against a system and society that deems Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders as "not good enough." In order to move away from the surface-level ideals that some carry about love, we must radicalize and revolutionize the notion of love and what that love looks like in action. The Asian American & Pacific Islander community looks to embrace this revolutionary love in order to promote the collective liberation of all people and to see their deeply connected roots of resistance. I spoke to Sabrina Lee, the Asian Pacific Islander Community Coordinator, to learn more about this event.

Flyer designed by: Emily Luong

What is the mission of the conference?

The goal of this conference is to highlight issues within the Asian Pacific Islander community and between various different communities. We wish to bring light to structural violence and show how stuff is interconnected within communities. There are so many issues and topics that need to be discussed and we are trying to expand and highlight the issues that are pertinent and relevant.

How do you wish for it to impact the community?

I want folks to get the startup conversation. I wish for people to have a much broader understanding of issues that directly impact the API community. Also that, as of now, Asian American is just a check box on a form. We need to go back to the roots to see different political movements and see the background.

What issues does the ethnic background of being Asian American and/or Pacific Islander face?

Well, first we need to desegregate the data—very often everyone is clumped together. 40% of this campus identifies as Asian American yet there are so many ethnicities clumped together in that title. There is no media representation given to these ethnic communities.

What can others do to be an ally?

The biggest thing anyone can do is to talk more and acknowledge the Asian diaspora and its history and the role it plays in the US. Also, it would be a big step for others to recognize the various communities within the Asian American Title.

This event is important to realize that it is community organized. It is a whole committee coming together to progress the agenda and it is open for anyone and everyone to attend.