The Pan Asian American Council is lead by the two PAAC co-chairs, and the PAAC fellows. The co-chairs lead the bi-weekly meetings, and work to ensure that the voice of the Asian, Pacific Islander, Desi, American (APIDA) community is represented on campus. They also work closely with the Asian American Center staff to ensure that the community is supported from different perspectives. The PAAC fellow team is comprised of folks who seek to build community amongst the 11 student organizations, and understand the needs from a larger organizational level. The fellows represent the entirety of the APIDA community and work closely with the co-chairs to create programs that highlight intentional allyship, community awareness, and self-knowledge.
Winnie Nguy is a third year Biology major at Northeastern University, minoring in math and (maybe?) computer science. She is from Weymouth, Massachusetts and having grown up in two very different communities (one predominantly Asian and one predominantly white), she was inspired to reconnect with her culture and heritage in a school with such a close-knit Asian American community. Through her friends from organizations like ASU and SASE, she found AASIA and PAAC, and continues to want to explore her role in bettering the community as a whole. Getting to be a part of a community that strives to highlight Asian American issues, identity and culture has really inspired her to appreciate herself, her heritage and the people around her. In the Asian American community, she found love, friendship, and empowerment.
As one of the the PAAC co-chairs this year, Winnie hopes to inspire others to continue to explore their Asian American identities and put into context what that means in the larger framework of society. She hopes that not only will people begin to advocate for themselves, but also for others who need help lifting their voices. The selflessness and service of those around her push her to strive to be the kind of leader that the community deserves.
Christopher Park is a third-year Biochemistry Major with a Minor in Health Science at Northeastern University. He is from Bergen County, New Jersey and grew up in a largely Korean-American community. He has been engaged with the Korean-American community since high-school, working with educators and Korean-American adoptees to help expose them to Korean culture. However, ever since he came to Northeastern, his engagement would grow to the Asian-American as a whole, becoming PAAC Representative for ASU as well as being a Mentor for the Asian American Students in Action program. These experiences led him to really appreciate how discussions about Asian American issues, identity, and culture really bring out beautiful narratives of both struggle and empowerment.
As one of the PAAC co-chairs, Chris hopes to continue to hear more Asian-American narratives as well as engage in the unique cultures and communities that make up the Asian American identity. Additionally, Chris hopes to continue to advocate for the AAC’s “student-first” vision by connecting with student leaders both within and outside the Asian American community this year.
Anisa Anuar is a fourth-year Computer Science and Design Major at Northeastern University. She is from West Haven, Connecticut and, as a result of living in a predominantly lower-class district, has attended relatively diverse schools ever since kindergarten. She grew up in a tight-knit Malaysian American community and always embraced her culture. In her freshman year of college, she quickly became involved in the Asian American community on campus, joining ASU as a freshman representative and participating in NUGOAL and AASIA. She also attended several retreats with the AAC and Northeastern community, including Explor(Asian), Destin(Asian), and EMPOWER. She has continued to be heavily involved with the AAC over the years as ASU treasurer, an AASIA mentor, and now an AASIA senior mentor and PAAC fellow.
As an active member of the Asian American community, and now as PAAC fellow, Anisa hopes to encourage regular discourse and awareness about Asian American issues such as the stigma against mental health and the lack of Asian American female leadership in growing industries such as tech. She hopes to see the cultural clubs on campus continue to succeed and grow, especially so with the help of PAAC.
Yaen Chen is a second-year Behavioral Neuroscience major at Northeastern University. Originally from an Asian-dominated community in Rowland Heights, CA, Yaen was inspired to join the PAAC community after moving to Boston and realizing how much she valued her cultural upbringing on a campus that lacked the diversity she was accustomed to. Yaen looked up to APIDA leaders on campus throughout her first year, which inspired her to become a PAAC fellow. In her free time, Yaen studies brain connectivity as a research assistant at the Music, Imaging, and Neural Dynamics Laboratory, spends time with fellow sisters of Kappa Phi Lambda, and performs with Revolve Dance Crew.