The Asian American Center at Northeastern seeks to establish a dynamic presence of the Asian American community at the University. The role of the Center at Northeastern is to ensure the development and enhancement of the University’s commitment to the Asian American community. In providing the Asian American community a vehicle for increasing visibility on campus, the Center aims to support student exploration of social identity development and empower students to take an active role in shaping their experiences at Northeastern. To that end, the Center strives to promote continued dialogue on the rich diversity and complexity of the Asian American experience, and how that complexity manifests itself in various aspects of life within and outside of the University.
Objectives and Goals
I. STUDENT DEVELOPMENT & CONSCIOUSNESS
Recognizing that identity development is at the core of the college experience, student development is one of the founding values of the Asian American Center. For Asian American college students, student development is intimately linked with their consciousness of their Asian American identity. Therefore, one of the primary functions of the Asian American Center is to create an environment where Asian American students can explore various facets of their social identity. Certainly, this includes creating physical space for discussions on social identity, and also includes creating a space where such dialogue is supported and indeed nurtured. The Asian American Center also recognizes the multiple roles and identities of all students and seeks to support students on all fronts, including their transition to Northeastern, their career goals, their student organizations and by encouraging all forms of cultural expression. Because the Asian American community at Northeastern continues to be a minority population on campus, the functions of the Asian American Center are intended to increase student satisfaction with their college experience. The Asian American Center strives to provide infrastructure to the growth of networks that provide an additional layer of support to Asian American students at Northeastern.
II. AWARENESS & DIALOGUE
The Asian American Center is committed to providing opportunities for all members of the Northeastern community to be continually educated on issues affecting the Asian American community. Through various programmatic initiatives, and strategic partnerships, the Center offers a diverse portfolio of programs about aspects of the Asian American experience. The Center believes that it has an obligation to serve as an educational resource, with the belief that an increased understanding of Asian American issues by the larger community is an important component to having an educated and informed citizenry, both within and beyond Northeastern’s campus. As a department in Enrollment Management and Student Affairs, the Asian American Center also works to promote and improve the general dialogue on issues of cultural pluralism, and addressing the experiences of marginalized groups on campus. The Center aims to contribute to the development of a dialogue at Northeastern that is vibrant and looks critically at race and identity in general, and the involvement of Asian American students, faculty, and staff in that discourse.
III. CONNECTIONS & COMMUNITY
As a collective of the Asian American community at Northeastern, the Asian American Center takes on the charge of representing this community both in the context of the university as a whole and to the larger community beyond. Participating in university-wide programs and events is one important way that the Asian American Center helps to raise the visibility of the Asian American community on campus and advocate on behalf of its members. In addition, working with neighboring community organizations provides unique opportunities for experiential learning and building networks beyond the boundaries of the University. As part of the University, the Asian American Center shares as one of its aspirations the value of sharing its resources with local schools and community groups. It is crucial for the center to stay connected to the larger spheres of the University and the Boston community for it is these contexts that continue to inform the work of the Asian American Center.
IV. UNIVERSITY ASPIRATIONS AND STRATEGIC GOALS
The Asian American Center partners with other campus offices to address and achieve the central aspirations of the University. Contributing to the growth and overall health of the University, the Asian American Center participates in a variety of campus-wide initiatives with a special emphasis on the role and/or involvement of the Asian American community at Northeastern. In particular, the Center plays a supporting and active role in the areas of enrollment management — student recruitment and retention; institutional advancement and identifying opportunities for increasing financial support for the Asian American Center and the University in general; supporting the expansion of alumnae relations activities and initiatives; and participating in the University’s focus on professional and career development for its students. When appropriate, the Center elevates itself into a more central role in the development of certain initiatives where it has an obvious connection or interest, and can offer assistance in an administrative, leadership, or programmatic capacity.