Project: Locating Ourselves in History

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Got this sent out my way and wanted to post it up as it sounds pretty cool - so head on out and add your story.

LEAP’s Leadership-in-Action (LIA) Interns Ask Asian Pacific Islander Americans to Reclaim History by Sharing Stories

Los Angeles, CA – A website showcasing a collection of personal narratives and histories of Asian Pacific Islander Americans will launch August 14th. The project, entitled Locating Ourselves in History, will be located at and aims to reweave the fabric of the American experience.

The project, put together by interns in the Leadership-in-Action program run by Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics, Inc. (LEAP) will display narratives and histories via an interactive timeline and geographical map.

The interns draw inspiration from Helen Zia, a journalist and scholar prominent in the Asian American community. Leslie Chanthaphasouk, an LIA intern, said, "I remember sitting in class, and hearing Zia's quote about not learning anything about people of color. She called us M.I.H, or 'missing in history.' It really formed the basis of our project." Jen Ju, another intern, added, "What we're looking at is an intersection of histories. On one hand, we have what's written in textbooks. This project will make sure that those stories of the struggles in the Asian Pacific Islanders that didn't make it will have a home."

The project, entitled Locating Ourselves in History focuses on the experience of Asian Americans. The project seeks to write history/herstory through the stories of various Asian Americans across the nation. Vi Nguyen noted, "Locating Ourselves in History means taking ownership of our own personal histories and making Asian American stories a part of a larger fabric of stories from different communities which make up the American experience."

Asian Pacific Islander Americans are invited to share their stories, while those from Southern California are particularly encouraged to participate. Interested persons can submit their personal narratives, histories and experiences by filling out the form at, or by uploading video to YouTube and sending the link through the form or to Submissions will be taken until August 9th.

About LEAP’s LIA Program:

Leadership in Action (LIA) is an eight-week paid summer internship program designed to develop emerging young leaders by providing college students with practical leadership skills and the opportunity to work hands-on in the Asian and Pacific Islander (API) community in Southern California. Approaching its 12th year, the program takes learning beyond the classroom, and places the student interns in a range of API community based organizations in order to gain real-life experience working at nonprofits.