AAPI Month: Graduate Center Scholars and Alumni Who Are Challenging the Status Quo and Raising Awareness of Their Communities

May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, an opportunity to honor the many Graduate Center professors, students, and alumni who have contributed to scholarship and activism focused on AAPI communities. We invite you to learn about the work of these 10 Graduate Center community members:

Ellie Hisama
1. Ellie Hisama (Ph.D. ’96, Music), a renowned scholar who has pushed for equity, diversity, and inclusion in the field of music theory for decades, is about to assume a new role as dean of the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music.

Celina Su
2. Professor Celina Su (GC/Brooklyn, Urban Education/Political Science) recently gave an in-depth interview to the San Diego Union Tribune about the rising violence against the AAPI community, covering the history and roots of the attacks, why they are increasing, and how people can help. 

Khánh Lê
3. Ph.D. candidate Khánh Lê recently received a Graduate Center dissertation fellowship for Cùng với nhau chung tay: A Collaborative project with Vietnamese youth, based on his experience as a Vietnam-born refugee who arrived in Philadelphia when he was 6 years old. 

The Graduate Center, CUNY · Margaret Chin on The Thought Project - Episode 90

4. Professor Margaret Chin (GC/Hunter, Sociology) examines the idea of a ‘bamboo ceiling’ in Stuck: Why Asian Americans Don’t Reach the Top of the Corporate Ladder, which she discussed on The Thought Project podcast.

Chris Eng
5. Chris A. Eng (Ph.D.’16, English), who co-founded the Coalition for the Revitalization of Asian American Studies at Hunter (CRAASH), received a Career Enhancement Fellowship from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation to support work on his book, Extravagant Provisions: Constraint and Queer Conviviality in Asian American Camps.

The Graduate Center, CUNY · The Thought Project - Episode 8 - Interview with Meena Alexander

6. Professor Meena Alexander (GC/Hunter, English), a revered poet and essayist who died in late 2018, spoke to The Graduate Center about her poetry, which frequently dealt with themes of passage out of India, displacement, and the feeling of being in “two places at once,/Sometimes three.”

Kevin Nadal
7. In his recent book, Queering Law and Order: LGBTQ Communities and the Criminal Justice System, Professor Kevin Nadal (GC/John Jay, Psychology) describes growing up as a gay, first-generation Filipino American child and how the experience affected him and his outlook. 

Lan Truong
8. Ph.D. student Lan Truong (Biology) received a Fulbright award to fund her trip to South Vietnam and hopes to raise awareness of Vietnam’s “unique, important, indigenous healing system”; she recently received a Graduate Center Dissertation Year fellowship to continue her work. 

Van Tran
9. Professor Van C. Tran (Sociology), a former refugee who worked his way through Hostos to Harvard, studies the U.S.-born children of immigrants, and how members of this second generation are being integrated into and transforming U.S. society.

Julie Suk
10. Professor Julie Suk (Sociology, Political Science), an expert on women, gender, constitutional law, recently spoke at a town hall on AAPI Women, Power, and the ERA   and the continuing fight for equality. 

Submitted on: MAY 1, 2021

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