Why Asian American Studies?

Student in Asian American Studies class

According to the most recent US census, Asian Americans, including longtime residents and newcomers, are the fastest growing racial/minority population in the United States. Asian Americans now make up about half of the people immigrating to the United States. Their histories, cultures, and experiences are crucial to understanding both historical and contemporary formations of American race relations, citizenship, identities, and values.

The University of Minnesota offers a particularly exciting platform for studying the interdisciplinary field of Asian American studies.

  • Minnesota's Asian American population has increased by 130 percent since the 1990s.
  • The Twin Cities now have the greatest concentration of Asian Americans in the United States interior and the largest concentration of Hmong Americans in an urban area.
  • The Asian American undergraduate population at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus is over 10 percent of the total student body.
  • Our Asian American Studies Program recognizes both the uniqueness of Minnesota's Asian American populations as well as their commonalities with each other and with other Asian American communities across the nation.
  • Community interests and concerns shape all of our curriculum, research projects, and outreach work.
  • With our locale, community resources, and faculty, we are helping create new models of teaching Asian American history, politics, literature, and cultures.

The Asian American Studies Program is a part of the Institute for Global Studies hub.