API KC: Potential Name Change

August 21, 2017

Dear API KC,

The demographics of the API KC membership are growing and evolving. As such, we are exploring a potential name change as the API KC Leadership Team strives to include and emphasize the experiences of all members in our community. Through various channels of feedback from API KC members over the years, the API KC is reflecting upon the inclusion of "Desi" in the name.

The term “Desi” references people of the Indian subcontinent or South Asia and their diaspora. According to Juhi Bhatt (2016), the term itself transcends geography and includes people in a global way. For many of us who’ve been a part of the KC the past few years, the term APIDA is a familiar term, a term we’ve used and have incorporated into our language and into our programming. In alignment with other national organizations and numerous higher education institutions, we are confident that this is a positive step forward. Our goal is to implement better practices to increase visibility of the Desi community within the larger racial categorization of Asian Pacific Islander.

We understand a name change is not all encompassing and will not change the institutional systems and structures which often aggregates and negatively perpetuates the pan-ethnic model to represent our Asian, Pacific Islander, Desi, American community.  However, as we move forward, it is our priority to continue to address the practices of the API KC and the larger NASPA membership by providing educational opportunities to inform and challenge our members to address and recognize the underrepresented ethnic identities within the Asian and Pacific Islander identity.

Finally, we want to hear from you, our members in guiding us on how we may rename the KC. On the survey, you will find options to select from and there will also be space for you to provide additional suggestions. The names were collected and compiled through research of various Asian, Pacific Islander, South Asian, and Desi/Desi American organization names across the country. We have also solicited feedback from leaders of our community. The name that receives the highest ranking will be forwarded to the NASPA Board of Directors by the API KC National Co-Chairs. The NASPA Board of Directors will, then, vote to approve or deny the name change. Please contact Queena Hoang ([email protected]) and Long Wu ([email protected]) if you have any questions.


Queena Hoang & Long Wu
2017-2019 NASPA API KC National Co-Chairs


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