‘Home away from home’

Alexandra LaCesa Practicum Contributor

The APCC gives students space to study, learn

Initially established as the Asian Cultural Center in 1980, and officially establishing in 1990, the Asian Pacific Cultural Center (APCC) took its current name in 2003.

Embracing their 26th year at Oregon State University, the APCC is one of the many places on campus that offers a friendly hand to students while promoting diversity.

The APCC was recently reopened in 2015 at its new location across the street from the Weatherford residence hall on the OSU campus, with the goal of creating a comfortable and welcoming place for students to come in and spend time.

Student Liaison Keanu Chee, has been working at the cultural center for the past year.

Recommended for the position by his cousin, Chee saw the opportunity to gain leadership experience, applied and went through various steps of training get the position.

“As far as the required training, we do a lot of team building activities,” Chee said.”You go through social justice training, how to identify inequalities on campus and they teach you how to respond and not react.”

Being a liaison, Chee not only offers his time to the APCC but acts as a resource for any questions or concerns his peers may have for him.

“We are always zoned in on what we are doing, our main objective when people come in is to show them as much attention as possible,” Chee said. “If we don’t have the resources here, we will definitely help find them.”

According to Chee, his favorite thing about the APCC is that it has more to offer other than cultural aspects on campus.

“Besides the people I work with and my boss, it is a very studious place,” Chee said. “Sometimes people look too much at the cultural part and not enough at the resource part, and for me, it is a home away from home.”

Currently, the API is focusing in on it’s cultural month her on campus where they encourage students to focus in on and learn more about the Asian and Pacific heritage.

The center’s biggest event is the Dead Week Feast, which happens every year during Fall term.

“It’s a time to step away from campus and enjoy a meal with fellow students and learn why you are in the center,” Chee said.

The APCC also gets involved with events on campus that include all multi-cultural centers ran through the Diversity and Cultural Engagement office . Often, cultural centers will attend events put on by other cultural centers and have the chance to learn more about diversity. Although not required, according to Chee, everyone likes helping out and coming together for these events.

Chee encourages students interested in learning more to stop by the center.

“I encourage people to just come in and be curious. There is so much more within the center people don’t get to see if they just walk by,” Chee said. “Part of that is the academic help we can offer here, and it is a very comfortable space for college students.”

The APCC is always welcoming new people and encouraging peers to learn more about all centers on campus, according to Chee.

According to Ashley Juan, a member at the APCC, they like to consider it a community within campus.

“My favorite part is having different people coming into the cultural center regardless if they are Asian or Pacific Islander identity,” Juan said. “It’s nice to meet people and that is our goal is to have a center where you see familiar faces as well as new ones.”

Like many other cultural centers on campus, the APCC has built a comfortable environment for new and old students to learn more about diversity at OSU.

Sending friendly encouragement to the incoming Freshman, Haley Slater said there are many benefits to getting involved early in one’s college career with cultural clubs and organizations.

“As a Freshman there is a lot of opportunity to get involved early on,” Slater said. “It lets you establish relationships with the clubs and during Fall term all clubs have welcome events where you can meet a lot of people.”

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