2022 Scholarship Winners
Congratulations to this year’s recipients of our Bright Futures Scholarship!
What do you think needs to be done to address anti-Asian hate?
Who is an Asian American leader (past or present) that you admire?
Describe an event in Asian American history that parallels what we are seeing today with anti-Asian hate crimes.
When I have my own family, I want to walk through the Chinatown that I grew up in and show my children my favorite restaurants, stationary stores, even my doctor’s office. When we walk along the streets of Mott, Doyer, and Pell, I pray that our eyes won’t be greeted by sleek high-rises. I pray that our rock is able to withstand the strong current for many years to come.
If I had to be honest, I truly have no clue when I realized it. Maybe it was when I was on the phone with him, crying my soul out because I thought I couldn't participate in a CTE program I worked so hard for since I was undocumented. Or maybe it was when he hugged me gently; like a wise older brother he told me, "Me and you? We are pretty similar."
We struggle to embrace anger— instead, we swallow it. We are bystanders to our own suffering because it is easier to accept and normalize violence than confront it. Rather than use invisibility as defense, we must equip ourselves with knowledge and a desire to retaliate.
Reading about Kochiyama’s optimistic sense of “We” gives me deja-vu to this time period. I am brought back to handing out flyers in humid NYC weather with our youth director Ananya. I am brought back to cheering along in Marcus Garvey Park as Cynthia Nixon endorses our movement.
We, the Asian community, have been forced to remember names such as Vicha Ratanapadkdee and Noel Quintana; we have been forced to scramble for self-defense tools; we have been forced to stay attentive on public transits, and we have been forced to tell our grandparents to stay home just for safety.