Past Projects

Merch

AAI wanted to do a fun art project and got a grant from CAMIT to explore screen printing. We screen printed tote bags and t-shirts to distribute to club members.

image of a p

Mental Health

Asian Americans are the least likely racial group to seek mental healthcare. Focused on the stigma surrounding mental health in Asian American communities, AAI aims to increase conversation and education surrounding mental health related issues through speaker events, open circle discussions, and more. Check out the Events page for upcoming sessions!

We’ve also curated a 2-part introductory guide on MIT Student Mental Health and Counseling Services (SMH&CS) with the help of Dr. Nadia Damani-Khoja. Click on the images below to see them on our Instagram!

An illustration of plant leaves on a green background with a large title reading MIT Mental Health Services 101 with the subtitle An Intro to MIT Student Mental Health and Counseling Services for Undergrads Brought to you by MIT Asian American Initiative (AAI) @mit.aai with the MIT AAI logo in the bottom center
An illustration of plant leaves on a green background with a large title reading MIT Mental Health Services 101 with the subtitle Taking a Look Beyond On-Campus Treatment Services Brought to you by MIT Asian American Initiative (AAI) @mit.aai with the MIT AAI logo in the bottom center

ECAASU Conference

ECAASU is the largest student conference for and by AAPI students. It is held annually by a college or group of colleges, usually spanning one to two days with over 45 workshops, speakers, and a closing event with around 100 to 1,200 attendees. AAI co-hosted ECAASU 2022 online.

Three people standing in from of a screen reading ECAASU 2020 Building Bridges in a banquet hall

PleasurexAAI Asian American Perspectives: Let’s Talk Relationship Summer Discussion Series

AAI is teaming up with MIT’s Pleasure to host a 2021 summer discussion series on everything relationships through an Asian American lens. We will be discussing everything from fetishization, cultural taboos, love languages, gender identity, and more.

AAPI Heritage Month 2021

Group of people outside three of whom are wearing Asian shirts

For Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in May 2021, AAI created a series of posters, stickers, and T-shirts highlighting notable and forgotten AAPI activists. Our goal for this project was to honor AAPI activism in light of anti-Asian sentiment during the pandemic. You can check out the designs here.

We sold to the MIT/Cambridge community as well as local colleges to fundraise for AAPI advocacy/art organizations. We ended up donating more than $800 to Goonj Rahat and Asian Americans Advancing Justice. We hope these can serve as symbols of solidarity for the AAPI community at MIT and in the Cambridge/Boston area. Thank you to the COOP and MindHandHeart for providing funding for this project.

Walkathon

Images of people outside Asian businesses with text saying AAI Walkathon 2020 In Support of Local Businesses on yellow background

We raised $571 dollars on our walk for local businesses through the LISC Rapid Relief and Resiliency Fund to sustainably support communities and businesses disproportionately affected by COVID-19. For every $20, we walked a mile, which amounted to 28 miles total. Different members of AAI from around the country partook in this walk in their towns! Check out images from the walk on our Instagram.

2020 Presidential Platform Translations

Language barriers make it difficult for many Americans to vote. In Fall 2020, we worked towards creating an accessible way to get informed about the Presidential Election by creating a multilingual resource on the presidential candidates and their platforms. Working with ActLingual to translate the document, we made the resources available in English, Spanish, Mandarin, and Thai. You can view the translations at platforms.carrd.co.

2020 Get Out the Vote Festival

An illustration of people at a concert in blue and red with the text Boston... Get Out the Vote! festival Intercollegiate Online Concert Sunday Oct 11, 6PM

People of color have historically had lower voter turnout rates due to the various barriers they face, such as language barriers, voter ID laws, polling accessibility, felony disenfranchisement, and a host of other suppression tactics. Alongside the MIT Undergraduate Association, Asian American Initiative, Latino Cultural Center, American Indian Science and Engineering Society, and Chinese Students Club with support from South Asian Association of Students and Black Students Union, we hosted a Get out the Vote festival to mobilize the BIPOC student vote, inviting various artists and speakers of color, and providing voting resources throughout the event. Over 1000 people ended up attending! Some guests included President Reif, Yo-Yo Ma, Duckworth, Bren Joy, Joyce Wrice, Raye Zaragoza, and Senator Alex Padilla. You can read about the festival at The Tech and MIT News.

Photo Mural for Asian Heritage Month 2019Image of many photos of Asian people at MIT with quotes pasted onto a column

In Spring 2019, for Asian Heritage Month in May, we asked Asian Americans at MIT what being Asian meant to them. We posted these responses and photos prominently in MIT’s iconic Lobby 7 and invited others to write about their experiences on poster paper.