Each individual has an obligation to help the next generation of young people, to help guide them, to help point them in the right direction, and to help inspire them to see beyond their community. As a society, if we do not engage young people, if we do not cultivate their spirits, if we do not motivate their movements, or provide them with possibilities, then the question should be asked: What are we doing to help our young people prepare for tomorrow?
Many young people are dependent on their electronic apparatus and mobile devices. More than ever, there is a need to help young people learn to connect with their cultural identity, expand their educational experience, and show them that there is a difference when they are asked to simply turn off their devices.
Recent studies have shown that Filipino American students have limited opportunities to develop their cultural identity, particularly in the public school system. The current school curriculum in California does not provide Filipino American students with opportunities to dialogue, engage, or share stories about Filipino American contributions, experiences, or history. With limited books, resources, and materials, Filipino American students are not provided with the necessary supports to help them develop their Filipino American cultural identity, and are often met with non-Filipino administrators, counselors, and teachers who have no knowledge about the Filipino American experience.
The Los Angeles Chapter of the Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS-LA), takes students out of their element and exposes them to a national conference, a national gathering, a national community, where they can meet actors, authors, educators, historians, professors, writers, and fellow students from across the country. This summer five Filipino American middle school students will have the opportunity to attend the FANHS 15th Biennial National Conference in San Diego, CA. Students will participate in workshops, an author’s reception, interact with older and younger members, and enjoy a banquet.
This year’s cohort of students will be recording and documenting their experience at the conference. FANHS hopes those who attend will inspire future students with what they have learned along the way. Thank you to NFTA-USA Giving Circle, Toyota, and AAPIP, for your support of FANHS and your support of Filipino American middle school student in the Los Angeles area.
Ronald S. Buenaventura, M.S., M.A., is a Doctoral Candidate and a National Trustee and member of the Governance Board of Trustees of Filipino American National Historical Society.
Bergano, E., Burk, C. T., Mercado, M. & Salcedo, V. (2010, July 23). SIGE! (Let’s go) Frameworks for inter-generational projects in Hampton Roads, Virginia. Workshop session presented at the 13th National Conference of the Filipino American National Historical Society. Seattle, Washington.
Cordova, F. (1983). Filipinos: Forgotten Asian Americans. Dubuque, IO: Kendall/Hall Publishing Co.
Filipino American National Historical Society. (1994). Filipino Americans: Discovering their past for their future. Filipino American National Historical Society and JF Wehman & Associates/MoonRae Productions, National Video Profiles, Inc: Seattle, WA.
Nadal, K. L. (2009). Filipino American psychology: A handbook of theory, research, and clinical practice. Bloomington, IN: Author House Publishing.
Nadal, K. L. (2004). Pilipino American identity development model. Multicultural Counseling and Development, 32, 45-62.
Los Angeles Unified School District. (2008). Guidelines for standard-based instruction:Secondary English/Language arts grades 6-12. Secondary Instructional Support Services, Secondary Literacy Branch, Publication No. SC-863.8. Retrieved from: http://www.lausd.k12.ca.us/lausd/offices/instruct/instruction_guidelines/LAUSD-ELA-Course-Guidelines.pdf