This coming Fall semester, the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) will be offering its new Pilipino Studies Minor Program for undergraduates.
Under UCLA’s Asian American studies program, the minor will be an interdisciplinary study that will examine meaningful Pilipino experiences such as the concepts of colonialism, politics, racism, and capitalism in relation to the Filipino population worldwide; and other socially-charged viewpoints.
It will also cover a range of topics, like the peoples’ language, migration, history, geography, and anthropology.
The research university is known for its diverse ethnic and course makeup, and after years of deliberation, they have finally officiated the Pilipino Studies Minor Program.
The school’s Asian American Studies Center’s (AASC) associate director, Melany De La Cruz-Viesca states the idea of the Pilipino Studies Minor Program came from students who were part of the AASC and Committee for Pilipino Studies (CPS) in the early 1990s.
In 2009, a Pilipino Studies concentration was approved at UCLA; and in 2017, a speaker series called “the Philippines and its Elsewheres” was taught in an Asian American studies course and spurred an interest throughout the campus towards the subject for the next two years. After which a proposal for the Pilipino Studies Minor Program was drafted and later presented. The minor was then approved on April 29, 2020.
De La Cruz-Viesca says, “A training in Pilipino Studies gives students the historical knowledge and critical thinking skills to imagine how to serve Pilipin[o] communities and fill the gaps in the existing literature, where the history, culture, and contributions of Pilipinos in America is sorely lacking.”
She also mentioned her hopes for a Pilipino cultural movement in the Fil-Am circles of the Los Angeles area, mirroring other cultural accomplishments made by other eager Asian American students.
Meanwhile, in a local effort to preserve local languages, linguistic and computer science experts in UP developed an online dictionary with the motive to save endangered Philippine languages while involving the Filipino community.
SEND CHEERS in the comments below to UCLA for offering intensive Pilipino Studies as a minor starting Fall 2020!
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