Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month

Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month is celebrated nationally in May. As a metropolitan, global university, St. John’s celebrates both Asian/Pacific-American and Asian/Pacific members of its community during Asian/Pacific Heritage Month (APHM). Further, to ensure that we provide a full month celebration since activities in May are abbreviated due to the close of the academic year, we celebrate in April.

Annually, APHM pays tribute to and honors the rich and diverse cultural legacy, history, traditions, and contributions by Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in this country.

In recognition of Asian/Pacific Heritage Month (APHM), the Office of Multicultural Affairs has organized a multicampus virtual celebration under this year’s theme, “ROOT: Reaffirming Our Own Traditions.”

Please register using the registration link associated next to each event below. Following registration, you will receive a confirmation email that includes virtual login access.

We invite you to join this year’s virtual APHM community celebration. If you have any questions about Asian American/Pacific Islander Heritage Month or are having issues registering, please contact the Office of Multicultural Affairs or Ching-Wen Rosa Yen at [email protected].

Featured Events

APHM Kickoff Celebration

Date: Thursday, April 8
Time: Common Hour (1:50–3:15 p.m. EST)
Location: Virtual | Register here for APHM Kickoff Celebration

Join us as we kick off APHM with student and invited guest performances. The event includes traditional performances rooted in Asian and Pacific Islander cultures.

Panel Discussion: Combating Anti-AAPI Racism

Date: Wednesday, April 14, 2021
Time: 5:30–6:45 p.m. EST
Location: Virtual | Register here for the panel discussion

Join us as we discuss the factors that enable anti-Asian racism, including political rhetoric, media representations, historical stereotypes, and racial profiling of AAPI. We will also explore the institutional, interpersonal, and individual impacts of anti-AAPI racism on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, followed by stories from students about how they have experienced and responded to anti-AAPI racism.

“Who Was St. John’s?: A Historical Audit” Lecture Series, Part 3—Student Activism after Vatican II

Date: Monday, April 19
Time: 1:50–3:15 p.m. EST
Location: Virtual | Register here for the lecture

In this third lecture in the series, Susie J. Pak, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Department of History, St. John’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, will study St. John’s after World War II when the University moved to Queens, NY, expanded into Staten Island, and left its Brooklyn home. Particular attention will be paid to the changes wrought by the Second Vatican Council, the faculty strike, and the rise of student activism through the 1960s into the 21st century.André McKenzie, Ed.D., Interim Dean, University Libraries and Vice Provost for Academic Support Services and Faculty Development, Office of the Provost, will serve as moderator.

Performances and Storytelling with Artist Pelenakeke Brown

Date: Tuesday, April 27
Time: 5:30–6:30 p.m. EST
Location: Virtual | Register here for Performances and Storytelling with Artist Pelenakeke Brown

Join us for an evening of storytelling, artistry, and performances by Pelenakeke Brown, a Samoan/Pakeha disabled artist originally from Aotearoa, New Zealand. Owen Duffy, Director of the Dr. M. T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery at St. John’s, will be the moderator.

Pelenakeke Brown is an interdisciplinary artist who is happy to share her talents and stories with our community. Ms. Brown’s talents and practice spans art, writing, and performance. She recently returned to Aotearoa after being based in New York City for six years. 

Ms. Brown has worked with The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center, Gibney Dance Center, and the Goethe-Institut. She is a 2020 Eyebeam Artist-in-Residence, and has been selected as one of four choreographers for AXIS Dance Company’s upcoming Choreo-Lab.

In 2019 she received a Dance/NYC’s Disability Dance Artistry Award and was the curator for the Artists of Color Council Movement Research at Judson Church Spring season. She has performed and exhibited her work in the US and internationally. Her nonfiction creative work has been published in The James Franco Review, Hawai‘i Review, Apogee Journal, and the Movement Research Performance Journal. She is a founding member of Touch Compass, New Zealand’s first mixed-ability dance company.

Ms. Brown attended the Studio Intensive Program at the National Academy School of Fine Arts in New York, and earned a B.A. in English literature and Pacific Studies, focusing on art and literature by Pasifika artists, from Auckland University in New Zealand. 

Global Kitchen 

Date: Friday, April 30
Time: 5:30–6:30 p.m. EST
Location: Virtual | Register here for Global Kitchen

Join us for an interactive cuisine session with collaborations by several Asian student organizations and Project AIM International Mentoring Program. These student members will demonstrate how to make traditional dishes influenced by Asian heritage and the traditional cuisine found in their culture and from their own families.