Voices and Stories

AAPI Voices and Stories: Community-based Digital Storytelling

Through the generous support of the Mellon Foundation, ASIANetwork is conducting a three-year pilot program on Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community-based digital storytelling. Our vision is to reshape the landscape of undergraduate education by incorporating and amplifying the voices of AAPI individuals in our teaching, research, and community engagement. We are also envisioning a new framework in which to carry out work that transcends the boundaries of Asian Studies, Asian American Studies and American Studies. Through this program, we hope to center the voices and agencies of AAPI communities as our partners with the assistance of ASIANetwork member institutions’ faculty and students. For ASIANetwork member institutions, this program will enhance their civic and community engagement activities across regions and enrich pedagogy in undergraduate curriculum. We view our community partners as collaborators and co-educators along with the faculty members.

AAPI Voices and Stories could be represented in many different forms such as oral history, poetic traditions, religious and ritual practices, recipes and culinary practice, song, dance, discussion around objects, and museum exhibits. Our program aims to: (1) strengthen community-academic partnerships that are significant for the community, (2) train and support ASIANetwork member institutions’ faculty and students to undertake community-led AAPI engagement initiatives (3) digitally archive, distribute, and publish stories of the lived experiences of AAPI communities, and (4) produce and disseminate educational materials that can be integrated in college curricula across our network. This is a capacity building initiative between ASIANetwork, our member institutions, and AAPI communities across the nation.

Each year, ASIANetwork will select two sites, each led by a Site Liaison for a 7-week summer project which includes collection of “voices and stories” and final product preparation. Each site team, consisting of one faculty member (the Site Liaison) and four students, will work with community partners. At each site, a Faculty Associate from another ASIANetwork member institution will join to contribute alongside the Site Liaison and student participants. Training will be a significant portion of this program.


For more information about Summer 2024 projects:
ASIANetwork is now accepting expressions of interest and applications for Site Liaisons for Summer 2025 projects.
To be included on our mailing list about upcoming opportunities, please fill out this brief form.
Inquiries: Dan Choffnes, Executive Director
Project leadership: Sophia Geng (St. Vincent College), Gordon Gray (Berea College), Hiroaki Kawamura (University of Findlay), Siti Kusujiarti (Warren Wilson College)
decorative image only
Sophia Geng (St. Vincent College) and Gordon Gray (Berea College) initiated this project in spring 2020 and carried it forward in a process involving roundtable discussions, group meetings with invested ASIANetwork colleagues, surveys of the ASIANetwork community, conference presentations, and development of multiple versions of the concept paper.