The Long Journey Home: Honoring UW Nikkei Students of 194142 Print
At a unique ceremony held Sunday, May 18, the University of Washington will give special recognition to all Japanese American students who were forced to leave campus in May 1942 to report to internment camps. During World War II, the federal government sent about 120,000 Japanese Americans living on the West Coast to internment camps, including approximately 70,000 U.S. citizens, in what historians call one of the most flagrant violations of civil rights in the 20th century. Above is a photo of Japanese Americans boarding a train at Seattle’s Union Station that will take them to the camps.

The UW estimates that about 440 students were forced to give up their studies that year and that more than 100 are still living. Columns published an award-winning series of articles about the impact of the 1942 internments on the UW and these students, “The Stolen Years” (December 2005 and March 2006). The Department of American Ethnic Studies, the UW Nikkei Alumni Association, the UWAA and other groups coordinated the effort to track down the former students. At the 2 p.m. ceremony in Kane Hall, President Mark A. Emmert, ’75, will confer special recognition to these students and their families. The public is welcome to attend the event. For more information, see the UWAA Events Calendar. Photo from the Seattle Post-Intelligencer collection at the Museum of History and Industry.