The Asian Student Union is this week hosting “Not a Model Minority,” which aims to educate the University community on stereotypes facing the Asian and Asian-American community.
The week focuses on combatting the perception that all Asian and Asian-American people are high achieving, self-sufficient and upwardly mobile.
This stereotype — known as the Model Minority Myth — erases and diminishes the heterogeneity of the diverse pan-ethnic experience and identities of Asians and Asian-Pacific Islanders, according to the event’s Facebook page.
It is important to challenge this seemingly positive stereotype’s damaging effects, said Aaku Tamrakar, ASU co-chair for advocacy.
“[This] ignores the needs of Asian Americans such as education, mental health and academic and professional development,” said Tamrakar, a third-year Commerce student.
Students participating in the event will gather on the Lawn to stand with a chalkboard message sharing their personal stories.
ASU also hosted Asian-American Studies Prof. Sylvia Chong at special event called “Do the Math!” Tuesday, in which Chong discussed the history and roots of the Model Minority Myth and its effect on the lives of Asian and Asian Pacific Islander Americans.
To foster collaboration between Asian and Asian Pacific Islander American organizations at the University, the ASU will on Wednesday join forces with the Vietnamese Student Association and Organization of Young Filipino Americans to present “Hoo Am I." The event is intended to examine students’ experiences with racism and micro-aggression, under-representation, and self-segregation.
“I think a lot of times we clump together Asian Americans as being one population,” Tamrakar said. “In reality it’s a really diverse and panethnic group of people."