I started UNC’s Mixed AAPI Students’ Heritage Club. MASH is a group for students to explore mixed Asian and/or Pacific Islander heritage and identity. The club promotes interest and awareness about diverse mixed Asian and/or Pacific Islander experiences and multiculturalism through discussions, workshops, speaker panels, and social events. I have played a direct role in the organizing the following
- 40+ members at weekly meetings
- Multiple 100+ person events hosted each year
- Regular social media content
- Art projects and fun community activities
In the fall of 2016, I started the Mixed AAPI Students’ Heritage club at UNC Chapel Hill. After spending time as the Vice President of the Asian Students’ Association, I felt that my voice as a mixed Asian American was not being heard. After collecting input from friends and peers, I held the first UNC MASH meeting on Thursday, September 15, 2016. After 24 general body meetings, over 100 members added, 3 movie screenings, and 1 mountain retreat, MASH had successfully completed its first year.
Workshops | 2016 – 2018
One of the reasons MASH was able to draw a large following in its initial stages was because members had a space to learn about race, identity, and themselves around other mixed asian people. For the first year, I ran a meeting every week on different topics ranging from Anti-Miscegenation legislation to Identity Construction, as well as Friendship Bracelet Making (social/bonding meetings). For each of these meetings, I prepared research and discussion questions for our group (20+ students) and facilitated group conversation. I have also had the opportunity to present general workshops on mixed identity at the 2017 East Coast Asian American Student Union Conference and Carolina Asia Center’s 2017 Asia Week.
After my internship at Visual Communications, I was inspired to run a film program featuring Asian/Pacific Islander media. We called it CineMASH. The program featured over an hour and a half of short films ranging in topics from sexuality, mixed-race, immigration, gender, and more. After the screenings, MASH provided homemade dumplings and hosted a panel discussion with community leaders to discuss the films. CineMASH was featured in the UNC campus newspaper, the Daily Tarheel.
Photo Project | Fall 2016
In order to spread awareness of mixed narratives and promote the group, MASH created an expressive photography project. I directed the execution and design of this project. The project is a compilation of photographs featuring members of MASH. Our portraits are overlaid with images describing the unique experiences that helped each of us to better understand our mixed race heritage. It is a visual expression of factors that shaped our identities and made us into who we are.