APIDA Faculty Staff Association

Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Faculty Staff Association

Past Events

APIDA Heritage Month 2021

Friday, May 14 from 12:10-1:00 PM

“Model Minorities, Perpetual Foreigners, & Asian/American Racialization”

Olivia Tran and Lilianne Tang (Student Diversity & Belonging) dive into the historical foundations of Asian racialization in the US and the inherent anti-Blackness of the model minority myth.

Friday, May 21 from 12:10 – 1:00 PM

“Understanding the Second-Generation Asian American Experience”

Join Professors Jess Lee (Sociology), Nisa Morey (Chemistry), and Grace Yeh (Ethnic Studies) in a moving discussion about the history and social context of the second-generation experience for Asian Americans.

Friday, May 28 from 12:10-1:00 PM

“Mixed-Asian Representation on Netflix”

Join Dr. Joy Pedersen (Dean of Students) and Jacob Campbell (Data & Budget Analyst, Cal Poly Scholars) for a virtual discussion on the rise of mixed-Asian stories and characters on Netflix and the challenges/opportunities of on-screen representation.

Spring Family Picnic 2018

When:    Saturday, April 21, 2018 1-3 p.m.
Where:   O'Neill Green


State of Asian Americans

When:    March 23, 2018
Where:   Chumash Auditorium

APIFSA members shared their experiences and knowledge at the State of Asian Americans panel hosted by the Cross Cultural Centers.

APIFSA Winter Luncheon

Fundraiser for APIFSA Scholarship Fund

Fundraiser for APIFSA Scholarship Fund

Student of Color Summit (SOCS):

When:    Saturday, May 20, 2017, 9AM-5PM
Where:   Baker 101 @ Cal Poly

Workshops: API Leadership by Grace Yeh and Joy Pedersen. Student Facilitators: Maggie Liu and Vivian Tai. 

Navigating STEM as a Member of An Underrepresented Group by Kathy Chen and Kelly Bennion. Student Facilitators: Louise Ibuna and Vivian Tai. 

APIFSA Spring Picnic

When:    Saturday, April 29, 2017, 1-3 pm
Where:   O'Neill Green


Students demonstrate their ice cream making skills at the APIFSA Spring Picnic.

Change the Status Quo Conference:

When:    February 17-18, 2017, 4-5PM
Where:  Chumash Auditorium

Workshops: Why #BLM Matter to Asian Pacific Islanders and UndocuAlly Training 1 for APIs

Remembrance to Action:

Lessons from the wartime internment of Japanese Americans

When:    February 17, 2017, 4-5PM
Where:  1st Community Gallery and atrium
               Robert E. Kennedy Library


Fundraiser for APIFSA Scholarship Fund

Fall Welcome Event (10/21/16)

Time:    12:00 noon to 1:00 pm
Where:  UU220

Professional Development Luncheon (2/23/16)

APIFSA Meet & Greet (Nov. 10, 2015)

APIFSA Scholarship for 2015

The Asian Pacific Islander Faculty and Staff Association (APIFSA) will be awarding two scholarships for $200 in the Spring 2015. The scholarship committee gives preference to students with demonstrated need and who have made significant contributions to the Asian American/Pacific Islander community.


All students with a minimum cumulative Cal Poly GPA of 2.5 at the start of Spring Quarter 2015 are eligible to apply. To receive the scholarship, the student must be enrolled as a full-time undergraduate during Fall 2015. Preference is given to students with demonstrated financial need and/or who have made significant contributions to the Asian American/Pacific Islander community.


Click here for instructions and application form. Applications must be received by 3pm on Friday, May 22, 2015—no late or incomplete applications will be accepted. Submit completed applications to the address below.


c/o Dean of Students
University Union, Building 65, Room 217

For walk-ins, please note the office hours are Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.


Please contact:
Grace Yeh at gyeh@calpoly.edu or
Que Dang at qpdang@calpoly.edu

Spring Social Event, April 25, 2015

Always a favorite event.


Location: San Luis Obispo Buddhist Temple
6996 Ontario Rd
San Luis Obispo, CA 93405
Google Maps Link:   https://maps.google.com/maps?q=6996+Ontario+Rd+San+Luis+Obispo,+CA+93405&hnear=6996+Ontario+Rd,+San+Luis+Obispo,+California+93405-8062&t=m&z=16

Professional Development Luncheon, February 12, 2015

API Faculty, Staff, Student Fall Social (November 18, 2014)

Spring Social Event, May 3, 2014

  • Buddhist Church of SLO (11:00am – 2:30pm)
  • Social event: Asian Pacific potluck.
  • Demonstration:  Sushi demonstration by Goshi’s Restaurant


Professional Development Luncheon, February 6, 2014

  • Keynote Speaker: President Les Wong from San Franscisco State University

API Faculty, Staff, Student Fall Social (November 14, 2013)

  • An opportunity for API faculty, staff, and students to network. Information about the scholarship was given and 2013 scholarship recipients were honored.

Fall Educational Workshop, October 29, 2013

  • UU 220
  • Keynote Speaker: Grace Yeh, Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies
  • Topic: Filipino Love Stories of San Luis Obispo and Northern Santa Barbara Counties, 1920-1979.
  • This is an ethnic studies memory project focused on under-documented communities of the Central Coast.  This draws from interviews with and personal archives of the wives and children of these first migrants to the agricultural region of the Central Coast.  These stories reveal the contrained circumstances that marked Filipino American lives as well as the intimate bonds - of marriage, family and community - forged under such circumstances. 

APIFSA Social Event, April 27, 2013

  • Buddhist Church of SLO (11:00am – 2:30pm)
  • Social Event:  Asian Pacific potluck
  • Demonstration:  Sushi demonstration by Goshi’s Restaurant. Chinese Student Club present their "Take-Out Kids" dancers.

APIFSA Professional Development Luncheon, February 6, 2013

  • PAC Lobby
  • Keynote Speaker: Henry Gee
  • Topic: Asian American and Pacific Islanders in Leadership - Pipeline or Pipedream?
  • Henry Gee is currently serving as Vice President for Student Affairs at Rio Hondo College.  He is very active with the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA).  He also serves with the Leadership Education of Asian Pacifics (LEAP) and co-facilitates a leadership development program in higher education.

APIFSA Social Event, April 28, 2012

  • Buddhist Church of SLO (11:00am – 2:30pm)
  • Social Event:  Asian Pacific potluck
  • Demonstration:  Sushi demonstration by Goshi’s Restaurant.  Taiko drum 

APIFSA Professional Development Luncheon, February 9. 2012

  • PAC Lobby
  • Keynote Speaker: JD Hokoyama, former President of LEAP, Inc.
  • Topic: “Twenty First Century Leadership”
  • This session presented a new leadership framework and characteristics of an effective 21st century leader in a diverse, multicultural society based on LEAP’s leadership philosophy that encourages participants to retain their cultural identity while maximizing their effectiveness. Additional focus was placed on broadening and deepening participant knowledge of the impact of their Asian cultural values on their behavior and the perceptions that result from their behaviors.

APIFSA Educational Workshop, October 26, 2011

  • UU204
  • Keynote Speaker: Dr. Christina Firpo, History Department
  • “Child Care in Vietnam During the Great Depression: Colonial Benevolence or Exploitation”
  • Topic: Dr. Firpo shared her research work on mixed race orphans (some being taken from their Vietnamese mothers) during the French colonial period in Vietnam and how the imperial government used these children to further establish European power.

APIFSA Social Event April 30, 2011

  • Buddhist Church of SLO
  • Social Event:  Asian Pacific potluck
  • Demonstration:  Sushi demonstration by Goshi’s Restaurant.  Dance demonstration by the Kasayahan, Filipino traditional dance group.
  • APIFSA also solicited funds for the American Red Cross in response to the humanitarian needs from the Tsunami.

APIFSA Professional Development Luncheon, February 9, 2011

  • PAC Lobby
  • Keynote Speaker: Bob Suzuki, President of Cal Poly Pomona (retired)
  • Topic: Dr. Suzuki shared about his personal journey as an API and encouraged others to pursue leadership roles in higher education.

LEAP Educational Workshop, November 4, 2010

  • UU220
  • Keynote Speaker: Dr. Don Rujin, Psychology Department
  • "Mental Health and Asian Pacific-Islanders"
  • Topic:  Dr. Rujin addressed mental health in API’s. This was in response to the recent student suicide.

LEAP Social Event, May 9, 2009

  • May 1, 2010, Buddhist Church in SLO​​​​​​​
  • Social Event:  Asian Pacific potluck
  • Demonstration:  Indian Food Cooking Demonstration by Hema Dandekar (CRP Department Head and author of “Beyond Curry” an Indian cookbook) and Dandiya dancers and Taiko Drummers.

LEAP Professional Development Luncheon, February 11, 2009

  • February 11, 2009, PAC Lobby
  • Keynote Speaker: Patrick Hayashi, Vice President for University of California Board of Regents (retired)
  • Topic: Dr. Hayashi spoke about his fight in the UC system and how admission criteria hinder the acceptance of Asian Pacific-Islanders and others into the UC system.  He also touched on his experience being interned and personal growth and development.

LEAP Social Event, May 10, 2008

  • Buddhist Church in SLO
  • Social Event:  Asian Pacific potluck
  • Demonstrations:  Thai Chi Center and Buddhist Taiko Drummers.
  • Faculty, staff and family members were invited to connect with Asian Pacific-Islanders at Cal Poly.

LEAP Professional Development Luncheon, February 6, 2008

  • PAC Lobby
  • Keynote Speaker: Audrey Yamagata-Noji​​​​​​​, Vice President of Student Affairs at Mt San Antonio College.
  • Topic: She spoke on how our cultural heritage can be both a help and hindrance to our professional success.
  • Asian Pacific-Islander faculty and staff were invited to attend.

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