Filipino American Student Association
The Filipino American Student Association is a student organization at the College of William and Mary.
The Filipino American Student Association at the College of William and Mary is a cultural organization that was founded in 1991 by a group of Filipino American students under the advisement of Professor Mario Zamora. The current adviser is Professor Francis Tanglao-Aguas, who has been with the College since 2005.
FASA's main objective is to promote a greater understanding and appreciation of the rich Filipino and Filipino-American cultures to all students at William and Mary and the community. Its emphasis is on cultural awareness and focuses on the contributions of Filipino-Americans to American society and current issues affecting them today. FASA’s major goals are to increase its visibility on campus through various cultural activities and to support and participate in cultural programs within the William and Mary community and with other universities.
FASA holds biweekly general meetings during which presentations regarding Filipino culture are exhibited and the general assembly is given the opportunity to vote on events pitched by the executive board.
FASA hosts a variety of events, from fundraisers to showcasing guest speakers at the College. Popular fundraisers include selling Turon and Halo-Halo, traditional Filipino desserts. Past guest speakers have included spoken word artists Phil Kaye and Sarah Kay (2012), entrepreneur for the non-profit organization ARK (Advancement for Rural Kids) Ayesha Vera-Yu, and more recently the Virginia Poet Laureate, Sofia Starnes (2014).
In 2009, the late FASA President Steven Enriquez and Vice President Amanda Tira Andrei collaborated to bring General Antonio Taguba to William and Mary to speak about his experiences as one of the highest ranking Filipino Americans in the US military. Mr. Enriquez also initiated FASA’s annual ritual ceremony celebrating and honoring the service of Filipino and Filipino American veterans at the Wren Chapel.
In hosting events, FASA also strives to inform the public about Filipino history. For example, FASA has held vigils for Filipino WWII veterans (2007, 2008) and for victims of Typhoon Haiyan (2013), and raised public consciousness of issues faced in the Philippines through cultural awareness weeks in which speakers were invited to discuss topics pertaining to the Philippines and movies were screened documenting Filipino conflicts.
Though Filipino Americans comprise most of the club’s membership, anyone is invited to participate in club activities. To facilitate bonding within the group, the Kuya/Ate program (Big brother/big sister) is hosted at the start of the fall semester, introducing new members to the atmosphere of FASA. Each new member becomes part of a family within the organization, making connections more personal as members become more invested in the organization.
FASA itself is a part of the greater Asian American community/family, taking part in the William and Mary-based Pan-Asian Coalition (PAC) and the regional District 7 sector of the Filipino Intercollegiate Networking Dialogue (FIND). Both facilitate communication with other cultural groups, though PAC is between other cultural organizations such as the Chinese Student Organization or the Korean American Student ASsociation while FIND is between other Filipino organizations at Virginia schools within the District 7 region (i.e. UVA, VCU, VT, etc). Activities within these communities span from activism conferences to Olympic-style field days facilitating bonding and growth.
Beginning in 1998, Culture Night is a student-run presentation held in the spring semester every year that combines Filipino and Filipino American dances, songs, and themes into one comprehensive showcase. The performance occurs through the medium of a play or a series of skits and is followed by a dinner of traditional Filipino foods. Culture Night is the most popular outreach program hosted by FASA.
FASA Culture Night Performances
|Date||Title||Culture Chairs (Directors)|
|Feb. 1998||Filipino Culture Night|
|Feb. 6, 1999||Filipino Cultural Night|
|Feb. 19, 2000||Ako Ay Pilipino-”A Cinderella Story”||Danae Busa, Gemma Longfellow, Mary Sy|
Jan. 27, 2001 Maalaala Mo Kaya?-”Will You Remember?” Rianne J. Rodriguez Julieta Valenzona Feb. 16, 2002 Pasalubong-”The Gift” Sharon Punzalan* Anna Navarro Feb. 15, 2003 Magunawan Tayo-”Understanding Each Other” Stacy Aquipel* Sienna Marie A. Malubay Feb. 14, 2004 Ang Pinanggalingan-”Know Your Roots” Liza de la Cruz Tamera Rivera Feb. 12, 2005 Ang Lakas ng Pamilya ay Lakas ng Bayan- ”The Strength of Our Family is the Strength of Our Nation” Aisa Martinez Tara Pascual Feb. 11, 2006 Sama Sama Tayo-”Let’s Stay Together” Tara Pascual Eirene Pilar Busa Feb. 10, 2007 Tatlong Daan, Isang Biyahe-”Three Paths, One Journey” Rob Landicho Melissa Lorenzo Feb. 2, 2008 Bayani-”A Filipino Journey” Rob Landicho Tamar Peterson Feb. 20, 2009 Kalayaan-”A Lesson From the Past” Cherrie Soleria Cecilia Esteban Feb. 6, 2010 Walang Pinagkaiba-”Not So Different” Feb. 5, 2011 Banggaan-”Collision” Stacy Lewis Michael Magaling Feb. 10, 2012 Paglalakbay-”Journey” Abby Acio Michael Magaling Feb. 8, 2013 Tiwala-”Confidence” Abby Acio Paul Atienza Feb. 16, 2014 Kakoyanang Bumangon-”Resilience” Weldon Emerson Michael Lefew
Some of FASA's presidents include:
- 1998-1999: Christian Jose
- 1999-2000: Rechelle Apolonio
- 2000-2001: Jeremy de Milo
- 2001-2002: Jeremy de Milo
- 2002-2003: Danielle Miranda
- 2003-2004: Carmela Laygo
- 2004-2005: Louise Lockett
- 2005-2006: Heather Soloria
- 2007-2008: Anthony Elopre and Carling Sitterley
- 2008-2009: Steven Enriquez
Material in the Special Collections Research Center
- Guide for conducting research related to the College of William & Mary
- Filipino American Student Association in the SCRC database.
- SCRC File.
- FASA website
- Current information about FASA is available at its website.
To search for further material, visit the Special Collections Research Center's Search Tool List for an overview of the Special Collections Database, W&M Digital Archive, Flat Hat-William & Mary News-Alumni Gazette index, card catalogs, and other tools available to help you find material of interest in the Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center.
Questions? Contact the Special Collections Research Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 757-221-3090, or visit the Special Collections Research Center in the Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.
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