Asian Awareness Week is ‘seeing through the haze’

By Perri Killam

Armed with informative posters and a megaphone, the sisters of Alpha Phi Gamma raised their voices Monday in the MLK Commons to raise awareness of the harmful effects of bullying as part of Asian Awareness Week.

Shouting out statistics like “Asian Americans are the fastest growing victims of hate crimes in the U.S.” or “One out of ten students drop out of school because they’re being bullied,” members of APG incorporated facts to get students’ attention at their event “See Through the Haze.”

By publicly stating these facts, the sorority attempted to inform students directly, rather than simply holding events or putting up flyers without a purpose behind them.

“It seemed like the most reasonable way to get the information out there,” said APG member Ivana Padilla.

Jessica Hing, senior hospitality administration major, said they chose the MLK Commons because of the daily traffic of students heading to or from class.

“Normally when I walk through I like to see what’s going on, so hopefully students will pay attention,” Hing said.

Lily Zhen, senior political science major, noticed that over the past year, bullying and hate crimes have been really prevalent in schools and society.

“We just wanted to bring awareness,” Zhen said.

Zhen said hazing is a particularly important issue for NIU students, especially those in Greek organizations.

“One guy, who was part of a fraternity, said that the statistics about hazing especially anger him, because that’s not what we’re about,” Zhen said.

“See Through the Haze” is part of the sorority’s annual “Asian Awareness Week,” which will continue through Thursday and includes different events discouraging discrimination, bullying, hate crimes and hazing in schools.