The month to celebrate being an Asian American/Pacific Islander (AAPI) is here! There is no better time than now to highlight the many beautiful aspects of what it means to be an Asian American and find light and celebration despite tragedy and injustice.
So what does it mean to be an Asian American individual? That’s always a tough question to answer, because, like any group of people who might look the same but come from vastly different backgrounds, it’s so dynamic. Here are a few major factors to consider as we celebrate what makes up the multidimensional background of an Asian American community member.
- There is vast diversity in the number of Asian countries and cultures that exist. Neither race nor ethnicity can give the full picture of the variety in individual cultures of Asian Americans. There are so many Asian cultures, ethnicities, and languages out there: Korean, Japanese, Taiwanese, Filipino, Vietnamese, Chinese, and Thai just to name a few! Each of these cultures offers its own unique foods, music, and cultural norms. We should absolutely celebrate the diverse backgrounds of Asian countries and find ways to appreciate diversity within the AAPI community.
- Generational differences. Whether someone is an immigrant, first-generation, second-generation, and on—it certainly makes a difference when understanding the cultural influence of the country someone came from while living in American culture. To weave between two very opposite cultures can be complex, and the generational difference can impact the landscape of what someone in the Asian American community is navigating behind the scenes. While experiences vary as each generation allows for cultural grasps to slowly start to loosen, there are so many aspects of all Asian cultures that are worth celebrating and valuable to hold on to and pass down!
- Where someone lives within the US. Across the country, there are pockets where different subsections of the AAPI community exist in ethnic enclaves. This means that within the US, where someone comes from can dictate the number of traumas and microaggressions they may be exposed to. If an AAPI member grew up in a location where there is a much higher Asian American population (think of the huge Chinatowns that exist), that might mean they were surrounded by individuals who are more likely to look like them, accept them, and reflect their experiences on a deeper level.
There is so much going on behind the scenes when it comes to navigating what the AAPI professional identity looks like when the personal identity might still be on its own journey. It can be difficult to feel empowered to speak up when oppressive forces come from both outside and inside the Asian community, all while still remembering to find value in the parts of the culture that make the AAPI community unique.
What Has LogicMonitor Done To Support the AAPI Community?
This May, LogicMonitor hosted a speaker presentation on the Anti-Asian Hate story for colleagues and allies. Those who are part of any minority group understand how challenging it is to witness horrible things happening to the people who look like them. It hurts deeply, creates fear, and contributes to a looming cloud of anxiety. As we are all on our own journeys in understanding and dissecting what is going on, it was overwhelmingly helpful to have a speaker who is well versed and knowledgeable come in to share that narrative on behalf of the Asian American community.
The speaker who visited LogicMonitor is Mỹ Tâm H. Nguyễn (Meeee-Tum New-Win), the CEO and Founder of làmdi. She has a tremendous amount of experience in work related to racial equity and addressing homelessness in the most marginalized communities. With a Masters in Urban Planning from Harvard’s Graduate School of Design, she’s on the board of Community Credit Lab, working to restructure financing to work for those who’ve been historically left out of economic well being; she’s also a founding board member of Atar, working on SaaS and AI solutions in collaboration with the UNHCR to help refugees resettle into their new home cities. To read more about Mỹ Tâm, check out her LinkedIn profile here and the powerful article she wrote, Asian American Women Are Resilient — and We Are Not OK.
Also, LogicMonitor is providing a grief seminar for those in the AAPI community at LogicMonitor. Needless to say, knowing about what’s going on and sharing the tragedies with others outside of the AAPI community is just the first step. But how do we address the emotional weight that lingers and is carried over into the professional setting? Mỹ Tâm is coming back to LogicMonitor in June to meet with individuals who identify with or have significant others who identify with the AAPI community to work through the traumas that recent resurgences have left behind. With her unique experience both as an AAPI community member and professional background, we look forward to the resources and coping strategies she will bring to further create a safe space for processing, healing, learning, and strengthening to move forward in solidarity.
Finding a voice collectively as the AAPI community might be challenging with so many behind-the-scenes nuances, but there is hope as companies like LogicMonitor do what they can to join the AAPI community on that journey to celebrate diversity and strive for a more empowered future.
Elise GanHuman Resources Generalist
Elise Gan is an employee at LogicMonitor.
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