Asian Americans: Not Your Model Minority!

Wednesday, April 2nd, students and faculty gathered in the Hoch-Shanahan Aviation Room to learn about Asian American identity, from the history of Asian immigrants to the U.S. and exclusionary laws to present day stereotypes and misconceptions. OID’s Associate Dean Sumi Pendakur led a discussion on racial stereotypes such as “forever forever” and “model minority”; many of which formed around the United States’ acceptance of Asian professionals to help with the Cold War arms and space race.


With a large number of Asian and Asian-American students, Harvey Mudd College is home to a number of clubs oriented towards building community among them, such as the Asian Pacific Islander Sponsor
Program at Mudd, also known as API-SPAM. Pendakur focused her presentation around how stereotypes can affect college students striving for success, and how we can break free from these false expectations.

IMG_0483The seminar was part of OID’s Lunchtime Learning Series known as “Chew on This,” which seeks to “Engage with hot topics, learn something new, and build your intercultural competence.”



Article written by: Graham Gordon ’15

Check out more events held by the HMC Office of Institutional Diversity

For more pictures of the OID: Chew on This!: Asian Americans – NOT Your Model Minority! discussion, like Harvey Mudd College Dean of Students on Facebook.  You can also follow us on Twitter @HMC DOS.