The Student Newspaper of The Loomis Chaffee School

The Loomis Chaffee Log

The Student Newspaper of The Loomis Chaffee School

The Loomis Chaffee Log

The Student Newspaper of The Loomis Chaffee School

The Loomis Chaffee Log

AAPI Heritage Month

With spring comes Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) month. For students at Loomis Chaffee — domestic and international alike — May is a month of celebration for identity.

LC’s Pan-Asian Student Alliance (PASA) welcomed students in their first AAPI month event on May 9, with a panel discussing mental health in the AAPI community. The panel consisted of Anusha Satheesh ’23, Mercuri Lam ’24, Claire Cen ’26, and Alex Park ’26. In the conversation, panelists identified differences between the past and present of AAPI mental health, both on the Loomis campus and beyond.

“This panel was important to me because I feel like mental health is such a stigmatized topic, especially in the AAPI community,” Lam said. “I’m glad there are more discussions around to normalize the concepts.”

However, the event was just one step to full Asian visibility at Loomis. Amongst the myriad of affinity group meetings and panels, there are still ways for LC to grow.

“I’ve never personally faced any uncomfortable situations because of my background at Loomis. However, I feel that anti-Asian racism within our community is not addressed by the administration,” PASA president Ella Xue ’23 said. “For instance, I’ve heard of students saying offensive slurs without being reprimanded, and I’ve seen students making fun of Asian food by calling it disgusting and pretending to gag.”

Another issue that has been brought up was the idea of first-generation Asian immigrants (first-gen Asians) versus their second-generation Asian American counterparts (second-gen Asians). Even though these two groups are both considered Asian American, the issues they face in terms of culture and identity can heavily vary.

“I also think the idea of first-gen and second-gen has been less emphasized [on campus]” freshman Ashley Jun ’26 said. “So people outside of the AAPI community don’t really know the culture of first-gen and second-gen [AAPI individuals], and how the two groups can differ.”

Another point brought up at the meeting was the idea of Movie Night screenings. In the past, PASA has hosted movie nights for the student body such as Kiki’s Delivery Service, Minari, and more.

“If there were a productive discussion afterward about the movies [we screen], I feel like that would be helpful for visibility.” senior Amy Song ’23 said. “I also think something that AAPI at Loomis can do better is making [these activities] more accessible to the rest of the student body. At the end of the day, we are doing [them] to spread awareness and become a part of the larger student body.”

Lastly, a suggestion included the idea of including more Pacific Islander stories and narratives in the LC community, both in the classroom and beyond.

“I feel that Pacific Islander heritage in particular has been neglected from the LC narrative,” Xue said.

Even in the face of all these future potentials, however, students still recognize that PASA has made significant strides in terms of supporting the AAPI community at Loomis. Along with affinity groups that are open to all Asian-identifying students, PASA also hosts movie nights and cultural events with other affinity groups, such as the Southeast Asians at Loomis (SEAL) organization and the South Asian Society (SAS). Many AAPI students also participated in the Cultural Outburst event, which hosted booths of foods from cultures around the globe for the entire LC community to enjoy.

“In the future, the Pan-Asian Student Alliance hopes to support AAPI visibility by continuing to host informative panels and collaborative discussions with other affinity groups,” Xue said.

“I think the PASA meetings have been really helpful in connecting with other people and building bridges,” Jun said. “I’m really excited to see what comes next.”

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