The Asian Pacific American (APA) Studies program offers undergraduate courses, two undergraduate minors, and graduate advising for students at MSU. The program promotes a broad understanding of the histories, cultures, and contemporary concerns of diverse Asian Pacific Islander Desi American (APIDA) peoples in the US and the Asian Diaspora. Deeply rooted in experiences of racially minoritized people in America who came from all parts of Asia and the Pacific region, the APA Studies program is dedicated to achieving Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) across and beyond MSU campus. The program is also a vibrant, active center for all members of the MSU community interested in the experiences of APIDAs as part of richly diverse US society, culture, and politics in both national and international contexts.

The APA Studies program makes connections with local Michigan and Midwestern APIDA communities. The APIDA population in Michigan is rapidly growing, with increasing numbers of students enrolling at MSU. Between 1990 and 2010, Michigan’s APIDA population more than doubled, and the state now has the second-largest APIDA community in the Midwest. 

Focusing on race, migration, globalization, and diaspora, the APA Studies program provides opportunities to explore the future of diversity in a global era. The program’s attention to Michigan APIDA populations—many of whom maintain transnational connections to their homelands in Asia—allows for the exploration of the local effects of global processes. Given the role of Asia and Asian immigrants in the new global economy, politics, and culture, APIDA communities are key starting points from which to examine processes of globalization that impact the changing face of US diversity.

APA Studies at MSU explores the history, media, art, and literature of APIDA people and expands on these areas with strengths in the social sciences, particularly anthropology, history, sociology, and psychology. This social science perspective facilitates the study of important contemporary transformations in US society and the Asian diaspora, strengthening the university’s mission to foster DEI, as well as global awareness and citizenship through community research, teaching, and outreach.