UW News

April 23, 2009

Organization of the week: The Asian and Pacific Islander American Faculty and Staff Association

Editor’s note: There are many organizations open to the UW faculty and staff. Some have been around for years and some are new. Some are structured groups with officers and committees; some are much more informal. University Week provides a space for campus groups to publish their information, and beginning this quarter, we’d like to introduce you to one group a week. This week, Peg Cheng, an academic adviser in the Gateway Center, introduces the Asian and Pacific Islander American Faculty and Staff Association.

Who can join?

The group is geared toward Asian and Pacific Islander American (APIA) faculty and staff. The Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity has helped sponsor these groups campuswide. We have about 100 people on our listserv. While we get about 10 people at planning meetings and 25 to 50 at our quarterly events, we would love to see more APIA faculty and staff members participate.

What does the organization do?

There are a lot of things we do or would like to do. Generally, we are here to support the leadership and career development and advancement of APIA faculty and staff. And we advocate for issues in higher education that affect Asian and Pacific Islander American faculty and staff, on all three UW campuses.

Also, we definitely offer social and professional networking. There are quite a few APIA staff and faculty on campus and there are no regular events where those staff and faculty members come together. We are trying to help out with that and have regular events every quarter where we meet others on campus who are APIA. Our group is part of the University’s mission to help establish more community on campus so people don’t feel so isolated.

Recent or typical activities:

We try to do one event a quarter and hold planning meetings every month. Last quarter we had a faculty-staff panel on, “What does it mean to be APIA in 2009?” We had four faculty members and one staff member talking about their take on what it means to be APIA in the Obama era. It sparked a great discussion between the panel and the audience. Fall quarter we had a welcome back to school reception with Provost Wise.

We’re having our spring meeting and potluck at noon on Thursday, May 7, at the Ethnic Cultural Center.

How can I get involved?

Sign up for the listserv and you’ll get e-mails about our latest meetings and events.

Would you like to list your organization on University Week? Our organizational listings are open to groups that are either sponsored by the University or meet on the University campus. They need not be formally chartered (a book group, for example, is eligible). To qualify for a University Week listing, groups should be open to all UW employees or all employees within a particular classification, e.g. the Professional Staff Organization. Groups that are for students only are not eligible. To list your organization, visit the organizations page and click on “Post your UW organization.”