Aileen Zheng
School & Year: 
Claremont McKenna College, 2023
Majors/Minors: Major: Economics with Data Science Sequence
Committees: Production and Helping Organize Political Engagement (HOPE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
Being a freshman and new to the 5Cs, everyone at the AARC has taken me in with open arms and been so helpful and welcoming. I really appreciate the community and inclusiveness of AARC. I am excited to learn and grow from everyone’s experiences and explore my own identity more.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
My favorite place to study is Kravis Lower Court, I like to play badminton, and I enjoy reading (but rarely have time anymore). I also love to just hang out with my friends and talk.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
A food that reminds me of home is guobian, a dish from Fuzhou where my parents are from. They use noodles cut into thick square like pieces and cook them along with seafood and vegetables in a really tasty broth.

Alex Sahai 2018 Staff Headshot

Alex Sahai
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Economics; Minor: Anthropology
Committees: Committee for South Asian Voices (CSAV) and Production
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a community of thoughtful, engaging, and respected leaders who facilitate connection between individuals and groups from a diverse set of backgrounds. It is also the most supportive community I have been a part of while in Claremont and I’m deeply thankful for the friendships that have come out of my involvement.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I really enjoy playing pool, ping pong, soccer, frisbee and spikeball. You can often find me listening to music or watching crime-based TV shows in my room!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My grandma makes this wonderful Brazilian flan from scratch which is usually one of the first things I eat when I visit home!

Alexa Bayangos
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Mathematics
Committees: Southeast Asian Committee (SEACOM) and Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC has been such a loving and supportive space for me to learn and grow as an individual. The AARC has given me the opportunity to not only explore my Filipinx-American identity but to also work with the communities that I care for the most.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I spend a lot of time playing guitar and eating yummy food with friends. I also try to go hiking and camping whenever I get the chance!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Kare Kare (a peanut based stew from the Philippines)

Brittany Chen
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Majors: Cognitive Science and French
Committees: Helping Organize Political Engagement (HOPE) and Pacific Islander Empowerment (PIE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
To me, the AARC represents a warm and compassionate space that welcomes diverse APIDA experiences and empowers students to explore identity and connect their experiences and culture with community and activism.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC, you will most likely find me in my room (probably napping). Another one of my favorite activities is singing – I am in Pomona College Choir and Glee Club on campus and can also be found singing/jamming in my car, in my room, and in the shower (I also love karaoke!!! pls sing with me). In addition, I also enjoy playing games with friends (some my favorites are Phase 10, Hanabi, Ticket to Ride, and Monopoly Deal).
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Hot pot (火鍋) is a food that is meaningful to me and reminds me of home, because my family in the US essentially consists of my immediate family of four, so we celebrate holidays like the Lunar New Year by sharing in a moment of warmth and conversation of hot pot. A fun part of eating hot pot at home is fighting my brother for the quail eggs (we love them).

Cassidy Lê
School & Year: Harvey Mudd College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Mathematics; Concentration: Asian American Studies
Committees: 7C Asian American Advisory Board
What does the AARC mean to you?
It’s a welcoming community for growth, learning, and support. There’s so much love and warmth. I think the AARC is unique in that I have always felt like my voice was heard by the people in the community, and people seem to genuinely care and want to listen and converse with you.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I like to watch movie trailers on YouTube or collage, and I’m always interested in a leisurely hike or trail run.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My mom makes this really delicious Burmese coconut noodle soup called ohn no khao swe. So good!

Cassie Wang
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Computer Science; Minors: Dance and Media Studies
Committees: Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE) and Production
What does the AARC mean to you?
To me, the AARC represents growth and warmth. It offers a space where I am able to learn more about and explore my APIDA identity in ways I wasn’t able to before college. It is a place where I am constantly learning from other members of the AARC community and where I can find a close community that always rejuvenates me.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love to dance! You can spot me grooving almost everywhere. I also like to listen to music, soak in the sun and cloud watch, drink coffee, make art, and eat yummy foods.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
The food that will always, always remind me of home is 番茄炒鸡蛋, tomato egg stir-fry with rice, noodles, or plain.

Claire Generous
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Environmental Analysis; Minor: Asian American Studies
Committees: Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE) and Pacific Islander Empowerment (PIE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a space where I am able to explore all parts of my identity as a Chinese American adoptee and foster community with other APIDA folx. I am excited to be a part of this supportive, loving community and learn from others about how to be a stronger ally on campus.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love to be outdoors camping, hiking, climbing, or really anything that gets me outside and off campus. I enjoy reading, listening to music/podcasts, and writing in my journal. I also love concerts. I think my favorite was going to Hozier last year.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Vietnamese banana tapioca pudding

Dom Aiu Taber
School & Year: Harvey Mudd College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Engineering
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a space to foster growth outside of the generic college lifestyle. It is a space for folks to be able to foster intentional community that provides meaningful support to the APIDA community at the 5Cs and beyond.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I enjoy playing music when I have the time. I play Guitar and Ukulele and I sing a bit. I really enjoy being outside in the fresh air doing anything from exercising to homework. I also enjoy just hanging out with some good company.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My family has a recipe for tomato sauce cake. I find it curious that my family loves tomato sauce so much that its part of a dessert.

Elaine Liu (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Majors: Computer Science and Neuroscience
Committees: Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE) and Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP)
What does the AARC mean to you?
At the AARC, I am constantly surrounded by warm, welcoming people who inspire me with all the work they do.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love laying around with friends while listening to music and soaking up the sunlight, puzzles & card games (highly recommend Microsoft’s Solitaire Collection app), and hiking/long walks to work up the appetite to eat a plateful of Frary’s vegan brownies.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Growing up, my mom would make a big pot of thịt kho/cá kho tộ (caramelized pork belly/catfish) every week, and whenever I’m in Bellevue, she makes the same meal and we eat it with stir-fried cabbage and egg over rice with a cold glass of soybean milk 🙂

Emily Nishimura 2018 Staff Square Headshot

Emily Nishimura
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Psychological Science; Minor: Asian American Studies
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP) and Asian American Mentor Program (AAMP) Head Mentor
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a space and community where I feel supported, challenged, and empowered as I navigate what it means to identify and live as an Asian American, fifth generation Japanese American woman in Claremont and in this current sociopolitical climate. This community seeks to welcome, respect, love, appreciate, and be in solidarity with individuals as we recognize that their identities and stories are valid. Through introspection and reflection, the AARC provides opportunities to engage in sometimes difficult, but relevant, critical conversations that may inspire growth and healing. I feel empowered and inspired by this community to believe that productive change can happen.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I truly value the time I share with friends, surrounded by quality music and food. I also enjoy the occasional long run or adventure in the outdoors. Honestly, my hobbies are constantly changing but recently I have been making friendship bracelets, playing the recorder, and taking pictures.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Misoyaki butterfish (miso-marinated black cod), Japanese-style scrambled eggs (with soy sauce and sugar beaten into the eggs), and chicken katsu (panko-breaded fried chicken cutlet) remind me most of home.

Gabby Lupola (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: History (Concentration: Transpacific); Minor: Italian
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP) and Pacific Islander Empowerment (PIE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a fun job, a great social hub, and one of my favorite places to study. I have met so many amazing people through this space, lucky to be a part of this community and produce work/events/etc. that help ground my identity as a Pacific Islander on campus. It’s a wholesome workplace that supports me in all facets of my life and allows me to engage with other communities in the area through STEP as well.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love to sing, read, write in my journal. I love going to the beach, skating down from Mudd all the way to south campus Pomona, and watching classic movies. I also collect records, 60 and counting LP’s in my collection thus far.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My favorite recipe is my mom’s pickled cucumbers. She marinates it over night so the vinegar and soy sauce seep into the cucumbers, has always been my favorite side dish of any Chamorro meal prepared (with the exception of red rice).

Jeffery Jen
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Sociology; Minor: Politics
Committees: Asian American Mentor Program (AAMP) Head Mentor
What does the AARC mean to you?
Not only does the AARC provide a valuable place where I feel at home with folks who have similar or shared backgrounds, but it is also a space where I am able to learn immensely about what it means to build and foster community among APIDA folks here on campus. At the AARC, I am able to engage with political and social issues that our community faces and help affect positive change.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I am someone who is super active and loves playing, watching, and talking about sports. If I’m not at the AARC doing homework, you can probably find me on Athearn field playing ultimate frisbee or in my room watching highlights of the latest Dodgers, Lakers, Patriots, and Chelsea FC matches. Besides that, I truly enjoy spending time with friends, whether that be playing Smash, going out for good food and boba, or having deep conversations late into the night.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
There’s a Taiwanese dish called 油饭 (yóufàn) which literally translates to Oily Rice but is probably better known as sticky rice. It’s a savory rice dish made with glutinous rice, pork, dried shrimp, mushroom, and soy sauce. Both of my parents would make this on special occasions such as birthdays or Thanksgiving.

Kim Tran
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Public Policy and Economics; Minor: Asian American Studies
Committees: Southeast Asian Committee (SEACOM) and Helping Organize Political Engagement (HOPE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a physical space and home that encompasses community, love, and warmth. It’s where I’ve met some of my closest friends on campus and where I feel like I can be the best version of myself. Over the past three years, it has facilitated and challenged my preexisting knowledge of education, community outreach, and self-love. The AARC continually reminds me to stay grounded as a first-generation college student and to be mindful with the work that I do for the community.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I really value spending quality time with friends in Claremont and keeping in touch with loved ones from home, wherever they are. I appreciate discovering good music, urban sustainability, scrolling through Twitter, learning choreography, and exploring cities.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Fried tofu in a sweet fish sauce marinade, served with a warm bowl of rice!

Kristen Takebayashi
School & Year: 
Scripps College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Psychology
Committees: 7C Asian American Advisory Board
What does the AARC mean to you?
To me the AARC is a community of amazing people dedicated to learning, growing, and fostering change.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC I enjoy spending time with friends, eating good food, being outdoors, and hanging out with my dogs!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
One of my favorite foods to eat at home is mochiko chicken curry with rice.

Kristine Chang
School & Year: Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Cognitive Science; Minor: Linguistics
Committees: Asian American Mentor Program (AAMP) Head Mentor
What does the AARC mean to you?
I see the AARC as a space for me to be an ally/activist and as a way to connect first-years and AAMP mentors with the larger 5C APIDA activist community.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Calligraphy, playing/listening to music, longboarding
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My mom’s oxtail soup :’)

Lemuel Lan
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Majors: Computer Science and Linguistics
Committees: Production and Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a place for APIDA students to come together, find community, and place of healing in a rather unforgiving campus. Here, I can find people who are passionate and genuinely caring about topics that affect the APIDA community. The AARC grants us a place to mobilize and build coalition together, addressing political topics while fostering a community that reaches out across the 5Cs. What I like about the AARC is that it is always a place of growth; there is always something to learn from my peers. It is a unique place to educate others outside of the AARC, but also continue to grow and understand what it means to be APIDA identifying.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC, I enjoy exercising (running, dancing, weightlifting). I also like hanging out with friends, whether it’s going out and hiking in nature, staying in and having late night conversations over drinks and fast food, or playing board/video games. I also like to play games like Overwatch and Hollow Knight. Other than that, I really like going off campus to explore what’s happening around me, so you’ll often catch me heading in to LA or going to the beach.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
It’s pretty basic, but I really like dumplings, whether it’s pan-fried or boiled. It’s probably one of the recipes that my whole family takes part in; we learned how to make them from scratch at a very young age. So now, my brothers and I like to get together to make dumplings with my mom, in place of the Western Thanksgiving dinner. It’s a fun way for us to bond together as a family, and we get to eat the results of our hard work! 🙂

Maddy Ding
School & Year: Claremont McKenna College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Psychology and Literature Dual
Committees: Production
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a place of comfort and growth for me! Surrounded by others who are passionate and dedicated, it is easy to be uplifted and supported in my work. Intentionality and thoughtfulness characterize some of its core traits. Together, AARC leadership and interns function as a family. The AARC strives to support and educate APIDA students and wider community, as well as discuss the intersections of APIDA identity.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC, I am one of the three heads of the Asian Pacific American Mentorship Program at CMC and a research assistant for the AMH-CARE (psychology) lab. Off campus, I like to hike, dance, and try new foods!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
One food that reminds me of home is hot pot because my mom loves it so much that we eat it in all seasons, hot or cold!

Manali Joshi (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: Scripps College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Majors: Politics and Economics
Committees: Committee for South Asian Voices (CSAV)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC, for me, is a space of love and support. Over the last two years, the AARC has given me space to grow and heal with my peers and I am so excited to be part of our community this year.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I am a head mentor for SAMP, the South Asian Mentorship Program. I also love to dance, listen to music, read poetry, drink boba and eat new foods!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My mom’s bhindi (okra) is a food that reminds me of home. Whenever I come home from school, it is the first meal we eat together 🙂

NaNa Mathis
School & Year: Scripps College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Majors: Computer Science; Minor: Mathematics
Committees: Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a space that focuses on supporting, educating, and empowering APIDA folx in Claremont and beyond. To me it represents a community that is intentional and active about its engagement in healing, growth, and activism. I really appreciate the way the AARC is able to center and validate marginalized voices and inspires me in the ways I can contribute and give back to the APIDA community.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love to eat yummy food and spend time with friends during game nights full of “friendly” competition. I also enjoy sleeping as much as I can and creating art whether it be through sewing, embroidery, photography, or drawing!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Anything with noodles! I love noodles so much that when I was younger I would have for breakfast, lunch and dinner. My parents know it’s my favorite and include it in any dishes they make.

Nghiem Nguyen
School & Year: Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Biology; Minor: Asian American Studies
Committees: Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE) and Southeast Asian Committee (SEACOM)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is an amazing resource for the AAPI community within the Claremont Colleges! However, while I am motivated by all the impactful and meaningful work that we do, I am sustained by the love and community that is fostered by the people that I get to work with. The AARC space/community was the first healing place where I was able to fully thrive as my entire self – first-gen, low-income, queer, nonbinary, Vietnamese-American, artist, mentor, etc. and I never had to leave a part of me behind. The AARC is a chosen family that accepts me for who I am and pushes me to grow even stronger.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love (body) painting, zine-making, volunteering, listening to music, eating food, writing poetry, reading, hanging out with friends/my partner, hiking, and anything that involves sunshine and fresh air!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Banh Xeo (Vietnamese Savory Crepe)

Nicah Vhin Driza
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Molecular Biology
Committees: Helping Organize Political Engagement (HOPE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a space on campus where I know all parts of my identity are welcomed with open arms. No matter how stressed I may be when I walk in, I always leave rejuvenated and ready to take on the rest of my day/week. To me, it is a place filled with laughter, kindness, a willingness to share and to learn, and love.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love spending time/catching with my friends while “studying” and facetiming my family whenever I can! I love to watch cheesy rom-coms, play on my uke + guitar, and nap whenever and wherever I can. When I need to be alone, I enjoy making books and using the printing press at Scripps (I recently released my first artist’s book! :)). I’m also really into skincare and stationery, so you know I’m always down to talk about skincare routines + pens~
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Any and all of the filipino food my mom and grandmother (when she’s visiting) makes will always remind me of home, but if I had to pick a favorite…it would probably be my mom’s sinigang (tamarind soup).

Renee Susanto (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Religious Studies
Committees: Pacific Islander Empowerment (PIE) and Southeast Asian Committee (SEACOM)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC is a community where I feel supported and affirmed in all of my identities. It’s a place where I can have conversations about and also further explore my second gen, diasporic identity (and the woes that come with that!) It also provides an outlet to do meaningful work for/in my beloved communities.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I enjoy attempting to pet dogs out on Marston Quad, eating avocados or blabbing about freeways, researching Korean skincare, and brainstorming ways to uproot the patriarch.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Home is wherever my family (both chosen and biological) is! tacos and Korean food (hit me up for the best place to get galbi tang in OC!) remind me of my home in Southern California and my grandma’s soto ayam reminds me of Indonesia — where I came from.

Sahana Mehta
School & Year: 
Scripps College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Majors: International Intercultural Studies and Feminist Gender Sexuality Studies
Committees: Committee for South Asian Voices (CSAV)
What does the AARC mean to you?
For me, the AARC is a loving community that grows together towards our shared vision of APIDA justice. The AARC has been a defining part of my college experience, and the friendships and mentorship I have gained through the AARC have been so special to me.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I love trying new boba with friends!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Bhindi (okra)

Sarah Tran
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Neuroscience; Minor: Asian American Studies
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP) and Helping Organize Political Engagement (HOPE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
AARC programming has been a part of my life from the day I stepped onto campus as a first year. I have met so many people I truly love through AARC programs and events and there are so many individuals who have worked in this space before me who continue to reach out to me offering guidance, encouragement, and wisdom. The AARC is a legacy of activists, organizers, artists, and radical healers that I feel so honored to be a part of. I discovered the Asian American Studies department through the AARC, which has helped me better incorporate social justice principles and my own identities into all the work I choose to do. I am so grateful that I have been able to have so many opportunities to think about, discuss, and interact with my identities in such meaningful ways. AAMP, and by extension, the AARC, was the first community on campus that made me feel comfortable in existing as I am and has reminded me time and time again that I am powerful not despite, but because of my background and experiences.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC, I write and perform poetry, discuss medicine, and spend a lot of time loving my friends.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
Hủ tiếu đồ biển is one of my favorite Việt dishes- it’s rice noodle soup with assorted seafood. 🙂

Soham Khan
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Psychology; Minor: History
Committees: Committee for South Asian Voices (CSAV) and Pacific Islander Empowerment (PIE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
When I first entered Pomona College, I was unsure how to navigate my identities as a second-generation Asian-American student. However, I soon found myself welcomed by my AAMP mentors, who introduced me to the resources available at the Asian American Resource Center (AARC). I appreciated the opportunity to peruse books from the shelves, attend workshops and events, and expand my awareness of APIDA issues in a warm, nurturing space. Now, as an AARC intern, I enjoy working with other interns and staff members to pursue APIDA equity and visibility both within and beyond the Claremont Colleges. I remain inspired by the collaborative, healing-centered approach to social justice embodied at the AARC.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I enjoy composing music (especially for piano, but I’ve written stuff for bassoon and voice before!), reading books, and drinking boba.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
That’s a good question! I have several different recipes, depending on my mood. Right now, I’m leaning towards biriyani, a spicy and flavorful Indian rice dish!

Tarini Gandhi (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Studio Art
Committees: Committee for South Asian Voices (CSAV) and Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
Not only is the AARC one of the most restoring and cathartic physical spaces on campus, but it is also a wonderful confluence of community and education. To me, being a part of the AARC with other dedicated and caring interns, means being given the rare opportunity to dust off stories that have been willfully cast to the fringes by dominant narratives. We get to understand these stories, learn about the people in them, and help share them with others on campus.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Hanging out with my friends, making playlists, folding laundry, downloading new fonts, and reading short stories using my measly New Yorker four-complimentary-articles-a-month allowance.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
A food that reminds me of home is Magic Masala Lay’s. More popularly known as just “Blue Lay’s.”

Tiffany Chen
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Neuroscience
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP) and Re-Imagining Social Expectations (RISE)
What does the AARC mean to you?
As a mentor for the Asian American Mentorship Program last year, becoming part of the AARC community is a way of continuing my learning and work surrounding APIDA activism. This year, I am excited to find a family in the AARC and build relationships across the 5Cs (and locally) to educate and empower APIDA folks.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I take dance classes whenever I have space in my schedule and might be trying to minor in dance! I also like watercoloring and doodling, journaling in the sun, and doing anything hands-on (my recent obsession is sewing scrunchies !!)
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
My dad likes to take leftover rice from dinner and make crunchy rice in the wok. We break the sheet of rice into smaller pieces, spread a layer of fermented bean curd on them, and sprinkle a little bit of white sugar on top. This recipe reminds me of the hours our family will spend in the kitchen from the start to end of dinner, when we have become drowsy from eating so much :,)

Ugen Yonten (Abroad Spring 2020)
School & Year: 
Pomona College, 2021
Majors/Minors: Major: Art
Committees: Production and Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC has become my second home because of the time I spend in the space and how much I learned from this community since arriving at Pomona. I think of the AARC as a space for healing and a space that fosters learning and inclusivity.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
I spend my time painting and drawing people I know. Recently, I have gotten into silk screens and collages. I really enjoy the process of creating something and seeing the outcome of an idea I had in my head.
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
At home we have a dumpling dish eaten with chili paste called Momos. As a kid I would eat them for special events like weddings or celebrations with family and friends. Momos remind me of childhood and family.

Vicky Lu
School & Year: 
Scripps College, 2020
Majors/Minors: Major: Biophysics
Committees: Saturday Tongan Education Program (STEP) and Southeast Asian Committee (SEACOM)
What does the AARC mean to you?
The AARC intentionally works to create inclusive and welcoming spaces for APIDA folks to explore, learn, and engage. I have found the AARC to be an amazing community that is filled with enormous amount of healing and love. I’m excited to be a part of this space and to continue on my journey of self-growth, learning, and activism!
What do you enjoy doing outside of the AARC?
Outside of the AARC, I love to spend time with my friends and family. Whether it be going on food adventures or having late night talks with them, they are a support system that I can always count on. I also love to do calligraphy and doodle!
What is your favorite recipe? If you don’t have one, what’s one food that reminds you of home?
I love all kinds of noodles, but my favorite is when my mom makes vegetarian bun rieu!