CREDE kicks off Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month festivities

Elon's Center for Race, Ethnicity and Diversity Education has planned an exciting series of events to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

This month, Elon will recognize the achievements and contributions of the Asian and Pacific Islander communities through a series of Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month festivities.

The Center for Race, Ethnicity and Diversity Education has planned several events throughout the month of April to celebrate the AAPI community on campus and beyond. AAPI Heritage Month is typically observed in May, but because of preparation for final exams and commencement activities next month, the CREDE is following the common practice of celebrating AAPI Heritage Month in April.

The CREDE, in partnership with Elon Maintaining Pan-Asian Respect, Equity and Social Service (EMPRESS), began the month’s celebration with an AAPI Heritage Month Kick-Off in Lakeside Plaza and inside Moseley Center. The event invited the campus community to take part in crafts and learn about several aspects of Asian and Pacific Islander culture.

Organizers welcomed students to their table in Moseley Center during Thursday’s kick-off event.

“This is our heritage, but we want everybody to be here and see us and see who we are,” said Alyssa Meritt ’21, president of EMPRESS. “With that experience comes understanding and important dialogue, so we have to keep setting this up, keep talking and hopefully the future is even brighter.”

The first night of Elon’s AAPI Heritage Month events also included a “Food for Thought” event, a continuation of the CREDE’s monthly town hall focusing on the experiences of AAPI students at Elon. Upcoming events include several opportunities to celebrate AAPI culture and engage in meaningful dialogue about issues facing the AAPI community today. Organizers hope these events can help strengthen bonds throughout the campus community.

“There can be no coalition building, and there is no freedom unless all of us are free,” said Kiah Glenn, assistant director of the CREDE, advisor for EMPRESS, and the contact for Elon’s AAPI, multiracial and indigenous populations. “I think folks are finally seeing that we all have to stand together, so I think it’s really going to be a great month.”

For more information about the CREDE, Asian and Pacific Islander Community Resources, and upcoming AAPI Heritage Month events, visit the Center for Race, Ethnicity and Diversity Education’s website here. You can also view a full list of the CREDE’s AAPI Heritage Month events below.

Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month Events at Elon

April 1-30: Signature Drinks at Irazu

Irazu Coffee Shop

Join Irazu as they celebrate AAPI Heritage Month with special drinks – the Green Tea London Fog and Iced Chai – all month long.

April 6: AAPI College Coffee

Join us for an Elon tradition as College Coffee offers a special menu to celebrate AAPI Heritage Month.

April 14: Kites!Kites!Kites!

Lakeside/Iconic Plaza, 3-5 p.m.

Join us as we make and decorate our own Kakudako and Rokkaku Kites. Kites were invented in 2600 B.C. in China, long before the start of written history. Over the years they’ve been used in different ways, including communication and measuring tools. These Kaku Dako hail historically from Tokyo. This name loosely translates from Japanese to English as “Angled Kite,” referring to the rectangular sides of the body. Join us in making and flying your very own.

April 15: Khmer New Year with APSA

Lakeside/Iconic Plaza, 5-7 p.m.

In Cambodia, Khmer New Year is the greatest traditional festival, and also the greatest national holiday.  The three- sometimes four-day festival begins on April 13 or 14, depending on the “MohaSangkran,” which is the ancient horoscope. Join APSA as they celebrate!

April 15: QUIET! A conversation with Silk Club: A zine for Asian and Asian American community

Zoom link, 6:30-8 p.m.

Join us for this amazing event as we talk with several members from Silk Club about their work, advocating for AAPI communities, representation, and what making a zine like QUIET! means to them. Registrants will also make their own zine pages.

Silk Club is an organization for Austin-based self-identified Asian American women, non-binary, and genderqueer folks to collaborate on projects that celebrate our experience. It is a space committed to validating and empowering intersectional identities, building creative opportunities, and fostering connections between different Asian communities. Since its inception in January 2018, Silk Club has hosted and participated in a number of community events and programs in addition to creating and developing the QUIET! zine.

QUIET! is a bi-annual zine that features photography, writing, art, design, and other creative works about Asian and Asian American experience. As Asian women, non-binary, and genderqueer folks, our stereotypically introverted demeanor has been used as a means of belittlement and ridicule. In an attempt to both unlearn and embrace this given identity, our collaborators reflect on many aspects of Asian and Asian American life. Within a social justice and feminist framework, our goal for the QUIET! zine is to highlight and empower Asian creatives, create a space for marginalized voices, and provide a creative outlet for members of the community.

Sponsored by the CREDE, Belk Library, and the GLC

April 20: “Asian America: Four Key Ideas” with Professor Raj Goshal

Zoom link, 5:30-7 p.m.

Asian Americans have played significant roles in the US and its systems of race since the 1800s. This presentation addresses our histories and demographics; the construction of Asian American identity; our multiple roles in America’s race systems; the presenter’s experiences as a multiracial Brown Asian-and-white man; and prospects for change and activism. It is designed for all levels of knowledge on these topics. The presentation is followed by a Q&A.

April 27: “The Farewell” film Screening with Global Neighborhood and World Languages

Global Media Room, 7 p.m.

Join The Global Neighborhood and World Languages as we watch “The Farewell.” In this funny, uplifting tale based on an actual lie, Chinese-born, U.S.-raised Billi (Awkwafina) reluctantly returns to Changchun to find that, although the whole family knows their beloved matriarch, Nai-Nai, has been given mere weeks to live, everyone has decided not to tell Nai-Nai herself. To assure her happiness, they gather under the joyful guise of an expedited wedding, uniting family members scattered among new homes abroad. As Billi navigates a minefield of family expectations and proprieties, she finds there’s a lot to celebrate: a chance to rediscover the country she left as a child, her grandmother’s wondrous spirit, and the ties that keep on binding even when so much goes unspoken. With The Farewell, writer/director Lulu Wang has created a heartfelt celebration of both the way we perform family and the way we live it, masterfully interweaving a gently humorous depiction of the good lie in action with a richly moving story of how family can unite and strengthen us, often in spite of ourselves.

April 30: AAPI End of the Year Celebration

McBride, 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Join us for our annual AAPI End of Year Celebration. RSVP here. RSVP required.