NACOGDOCHES, Texas — Stephen F. Austin State University’s Office of Multicultural Affairs will host an event April 21 in recognition and celebration of Asian American and Pacific Islanders Heritage Month, a national holiday that takes place each May.

This year’s event will give particular attention to acts of violence that have affected the Asian American community specifically during the past year and to honor the lives lost in such attacks.

“In the past, this event has focused on celebrating the success of the Asian American community and highlighting cultural practices and individuals in the Nacogdoches community,” said Kori Lewis, OMA student ambassador. “Due to the widespread acts of hate against the Asian American community, we will be including a compilation of reaction and eye-witness videos on a loop during the event, as well as a memorial table in honor of those lost in the recent attacks in Atlanta, Georgia.”

According to, May was chosen to commemorate the immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and to mark the anniversary of the completion of the transcontinental railroad on May 10, 1869. The majority of the workers who laid the tracks were Chinese immigrants.

“The purpose of this commemorative month is to recognize and celebrate the achievements of and progress made by Asian American and Pacific Islanders despite the hardships and tribulations they may face day-to-day,” said La-Meria Seriale, OMA student ambassador. “We also hope to give that community the platform to stand up and be heard.”

The event will feature arts and crafts and informational video projects. Additionally, participants will have opportunities to petition in support of the Asian American and Pacific Islanders community.

The celebration will be from noon to 2 p.m. April 21 in the Baker Pattillo Student Center Spirit Lounge on the SFA campus. The Nacogdoches and SFA communities are invited to attend the come-and-go event. It is free to attend, and registration is not required.

Attendees will be required to abide by SFA’s mask requirement and maintain a safe physical distance from other attendees.