I really liked the article “A Full-on CRAASH at Hunter College” because I have met members who were part of the organization in the spring of 2011. They seemed very committed to the cause so I did not find it a surprise that this article showcased the passionate leaders of the organization. I took several Asian American courses and I found them really helpful in understanding the discourse of various liberation movements. I thought it was really helpful for future students of that rally to continue to be able to take courses because it offers insight into Asian American history and sentiment. It is a different telling of history in the eyes of several Asian American scholars as well as an education in how we can fight for Asian American rights.
It is difficult to maintain a Hunter College Asian American Studies Program without enough funding as well as the constant change of faculty but otherwise looking at the courses that Hunter College offers, I actually think it is plenty. It did not surprise me that Hunter College had more Asian American Studies Courses than most schools in New York and the only CUNY to offer the program but I do think it is necessary to continue to fight for more funding and better resources to teach the material better. The more courses I took, the more I could relate the material to other discourses in political science and the more I understood how the world worked under systems of oppression, marginalization, and empire.
That being said, I was not surprised to read that within the CUNY system, administration gave apathetic responses when students fought for greater funding for Asian American Studies Program and more resources. I think it is a predictable response by the Hunter College administration to students who want to break the status quo for a program that promotes awareness. It is a predictable response in terms of understanding neo-liberalism why the administration would want to push off the interests of the Asian American Studies Program. I think it is easier for the administration to push off the interests of the students in comparison to the response by the college administration during the San Francisco protests.
In “’On Strike!’: San Francisco College Strike, 1968-1969’” by Karen Umemoto, while a School of Ethnic Studies was created at San Francisco State due to many days of protest, I would not be surprised if students have to continue to fight a dreary and long-drawn fight. I think it is hard for students to have to fight for greater awareness at Hunter College because it always seems like there is a barrier between the many offices of Hunter College, the administration, and the attitude to students. It is particularly hard to students who want to break the status quo to be heard or even be recognized as a group because the CUNY system in itself is a system that was segregated with no real glue in terms of student action and collective action.
The administration seems to not want to be involved in movements led by Asian American students but perhaps this is due to the way the CUNY system is set up. There are no real dorms for the entire student population or general housing, and so it is particularly hard for students to really gain a sense of community and fight for a common cause.
How can we promote a greater understanding of the Asian American Studies Program and how is it fought for in other colleges around the state?
How can we rally more funding for the Asian American Studies Program and how is it done in other colleges around the state?