ABOUT THIS BOOK
Higher education hails Asian American students as model minorities who face no educational barriers given their purported cultural values of hard work and political passivity. Described as “over-represented,” Asian Americans have been overlooked in discussions about diversity; however, racial hostility continues to affect Asian American students, and they have actively challenged their invisibility in minority student discussions. This study details the history of Asian American student activism at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, as students rejected the university’s definition of minority student needs that relied on a model minority myth, measures of under-representation, and a Black-White racial model, concepts that made them an “unseen unheard minority.” This activism led to the creation on campus of one of the largest Asian American Studies programs and Asian American cultural centers in the Midwest. Their histories reveal the limitations of understanding minority student needs solely along measures of under-representation and the realities of race for Asian American college students.