Join Georgia State's Cultures, Communities and Inclusion team and the greater community in observing Asian Pacific Islander & Desi American (APIDA) Heritage Month with events during the last week of March and throughout the month of April. Although the United States officially observes this commemoration in May, the university holds events and observances earlier so that all may participate before classes end for the spring semester.
We use the term APIDA, which stands for Asian Pacific Islander Desi American, as a pan-ethnic classification that intentionally includes people of South Asian descent (Desi) as part of our community. There is a great diversity of identities and ethnicities encompassed under the APIDA umbrella, including but not limited to East Asian, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander. Learn more in the section below:
There is tremendous diversity in Asia, with more than 40 countries and more ethnicities than countries themselves:
- Central Asians: Afghani, Armenian, Azerbaijani, Georgians, Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tajik, Turkmen, Uzbek
- East Asians: Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Okinawan, Taiwanese, Tibetan, Mongolian
- Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders: Individuals whose heritage is that of the original peoples of Polynesia, Micronesia, and Melanesia. Polynesia includes Hawaii (Native Hawaiian), Samoa (Samoan), American Samoa (Samoan), Tokelau (Tokelauan), Tahiti (Tahitian), and Tonga (Tongan). Micronesia includes Guam (Guamanian or Chamorro, Mariana Islands (Mariana Islander), Saipan (Saipanese), Palau (Palauan), Yap (Yapanese), Chuuk (Chuukese), Pohnpei (Pohnpeian), Kosrae (Kosraean), Marshall Islands (Marshallese), and Kiribati (I-Kiribat). Melanesia includes Fiji (Fijian), Papau New Guinea (Papua New Guinean), Solomon Islands (Solomon Islander), and Vanuatu (Ni-Vanuatu)
- Southeast Asians: Burma, Brunei, Cambodia (Khmer, Cham, KhmerLoeu), Indonesia, Laos (Hmong, Lao, Lao Loum, Iu Mien, Khmu, Tai Dam, Tai Leu, and many other ethnic groups), Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Philippines, and Vietnam (Vietnamese, Khmer Kampuchea Krom, Montagnards)
- South Asians: Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Ethnic groups include Sindhi, Gujarati, Punjabi, Tamil, and many others.
- West Asians: This can be a contested term, as many people from the region do not self-identify as such. West Asia is typically referred to as the Middle East, and geographically includes the countries of Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey (straddles Europe and Asia) United Arab Emirates and Yemen. (EDITOR: We have added this region in 2022, especially since Georgia State's Persian Student Association is co-sponsoring an event among this year's APIDA activities with the celebration of Nowruz1.)
This information was updated from last year's APIDA events page. The new information is courtesy of the Library of Virginia at https://edu.lva.virginia.gov/apidaresources/.
1Persian New Year. Persia is the historic name of the region where the modern day nation-state of Iran is located; many whose heritage is from the region identify as Persian rather than with the modern day nation-state.
APIDA Heritage Month, also referred to as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month, began as "Pacific/Asian American Heritage Week" after its introduction into Congress in 1977 and eventually passed into legislation by President Jimmy Carter on October 5, 1978. In 1992, Congress officially designated May as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month to honor the community's rich heritage and contributions that have been integral in shaping the United States' history.
The month of May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants. Learn more about events and observances, including registration information, below!
Event Listings for April 2024 Will Appear Below in March
Please note that event listings are subject to change, and new events may be added below.
If you'd like to add an event, please use the "SUBMIT YOUR EVENT" button above.
Student Organizations - International Student Associations Council (ISAC)
Find a list of student organizations through the International Student Associations Council (ISAC) at the link below. Some of the organizations include, but are not limited to the following (you will find them in the listings at the link):
- Asian American Student Organization
- Chinese Student Union
- Korean Undergraduate Student Association
- Japanese Student Association
- Indian Cultural Exchange
- Nepali Student Association
- Pakistani Student Association
- Persian Student Association
- Vietnamese Student Association
Find Additional Student Organizations
Search the Panther Involvement Network website for additional student organizations which represent different cultures and communities.
Asian/Asian American Faculty Identity Group (AAAFIG)
The mission of the Asian and Asian American Faculty Identity Group (AAAFIG) at Georgia State University is to promote the interests of Asians and Asian Americans within the institution and to foster an inclusive community among our faculty for personal and professional growth.
Cultures, Communities & Inclusion
Cultures, Communities, and Inclusion celebrates the U in GSU! CCI provides a variety programs, initiatives, and workshops that educate, fosters community-building, enriches the overall campus experience for the campus community, and prepare students for the world that awaits them post-graduation.
The Multicultural Center supports Georgia State University’s mission of educating students to participate in a global economy with individuals different from themselves. To assist students in successfully engaging in this global process, the Multicultural Center provides opportunities for intentional, meaningful programming and dialogue to assist students to learn more about themselves and others.
International Student & Scholar Services
ISSS is an office in the Division of Student Success and is comprised of professional international educators who provide comprehensive assistance and support for the international community at Georgia State.
Office of International Initiatives
OII is the home of several important programs, including the Virtual Exchange Initiative, the Global Scholar Distinction, Chinese Language, Culture and Business Initiatives, and International Education Week, and is home for Georgia State's Study Abroad Programs. OII also leads in assisting faculty with international partnerships.