Calendar of Events 

Virtual Book Display

Through April
NEIU Libraries

NEIU Libraries hosts a wide variety of resources such as books, streaming videos, special collections, and additional resources pertaining to the Asian Pacific Islander Desi American (APIDA) community.

Curated by Michelle Oh, Associate Professor; Education Librarian

Pedroso Kickoff Event: APIDA 101 PRESENTATION

2-3 p.m. Friday, April 1
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

The Angelina Pedroso Center for Diversity and Intercultural Affairs kicks off the 2022 Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Heritage Month with a presentation from their APIDA Student Engagement Graduate Assistant, Rignesha Prajapati (she/they). Rignesha will provide a brief overview of the acronym, history of the community and a resource guide which can be used to understand APIDA students in higher education context.


1-2 p.m. Tuesday, April. 5
Online via Zoom; 
sign up to attend

Join us for a keynote address from Dr. Jacqueline Mac, Assistant Professor in Higher Education at Northern Illinois University. Dr. Mac will talk about the importance of including Asian American communities in advancing diversity, equity and inclusion in higher education.

Sponsored by the Pedroso Center and the COMPASS Program at Oakton Community College.

Jacqueline Mac (she/hers), Ph.D., is a first-generation Southeast Asian American college graduate and assistant professor in higher education at Northern Illinois University. Mac teaches courses on public policy, research methods and equity in higher education. Mac's research focuses on racialized campus environments, institutional transformation toward equity, and higher education access policies. She has a particular interest in racially marginalized, Southeast Asian American and refugee populations, as well as minority-serving institutions. Prior to her doctoral work, Mac worked primarily in institutional diversity and multicultural affairs offices at multiple postsecondary institutions, as well as at a national education nonprofit.


7-8 p.m. Thursday, April 7
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

Co-hosted by Student Leadership Development and PIN@Y club. Contact PIN@Y club at or follow them on Instagram at @neiupinoy to get event updates.


10-10:15 a.m. Friday, April 8
Pedroso Center, Room B 159

Started in the mid 90s by two college students and later supported by GLSEN, Day of Silence is an annual campaign which takes place on the second Friday in April. This is a national student-led demonstration where LGBTQ students and allies all around the country—and the world—take a vow of silence to protest the harmful effects of harassment and discrimination of LGBTQ people in schools. Join the Pedroso Center in observing this day in support of the LGBTQIA+ community at NEIU. If you cannot attend the event in-person, you can leave a supportive note on Padlet.


4-5 p.m. Friday, April 8
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

After observing the National Day of Silence, the Pedroso Center invites the NEIU community to attend a workshop hosted by Desi Rainbow Parents & Allies. Rahul Deshmukh, Mahereen Ahearn and Anisha Tailor will present a workshop featuring the lived experience and stories of LGBTQ+ Desis and their families with the goal of informing the audience how Desi immigrants and their families navigate the intersections of immigration, race, sexual orientation and gender identity.

Anisha Tailor (he/him/his) is a queer urban planner, community organizer, and social justice advocate. He currently works at the University of Illinois Chicago as a researcher working on water issues, such as access, distribution, treatment and how they relate to environmental justice concerns. Previously, he served as co-chair of KhushDC, an organization serving the South Asian LGBTQ community in the Washington, D.C. metro area. Tailor enjoys biking, reading, cooking and being a denizen of nightlife.

Mehereen Baig (she/her/ally) is a mother to three boys, ages 23, 20 and 17, with the two eldest being cisgender and the youngest being transgender. As an immigrant from Pakistan, Baig came to the United States at four years of age, and was raised in a conservative, traditional Muslim family. While in college, she broke a cultural norm by marrying outside of her customs and nationality to a Caucasian American convert to Islam. She and her ex-husband raised their children in the folds of a loving, Islamic household and despite the end of a 25-year marriage, continue to co-parent together, alongside Baig's new family. They are united as strong advocates for all of their boys regardless of their children’s spiritual beliefs, self-identity and political party affiliation. Baig is an educator of 28 years and also a member of Desi Rainbows Parents & Allies, and also serves a volunteer on the PTEC (Parents for Transgender Equality Council) on the Human Rights Campaign, since 2020.

Rahul Deshmukh is a parent of a 10-year-old transfeminine child. In addition to being an ally of LGBTQ+, he along with his wife Reema are active members of Desi Rainbows. In his professional life, Deshmukh is a professor at Rosalind Franklin University (RFU) and proud to be associated with a strong, diverse community with a long history of inclusion. At RFU, he is involved in the training of future pharmacists and other healthcare professionals. At Desi Rainbows, he wants to help other desi parents to see beyond and celebrate our children's identities that exist beyond the binaries within which most of us grew up.


6-8 p.m. Wednesday, April 13
Main Campus, Room SU 107

Join us for CIRCA Pintig's Community Workshop Series: Racial Healing and the Subversion of Hate, an interactive conversation on confronting the impact of racial violence and the role of the arts in subverting the culture of hate against Asian Americans. Integrated into the workshop will be a pop-up exhibit of AAP(I Belong), a creative response activity, call to action and light refreshments of traditional Filipino foods. CIRCA Pintig is a theater and education organization that engages communities through self-expression and artistic endeavor to challenge injustice and enact social change.

Workshop facilitators:

Executive Director Ginger Leopoldo is an educator, actor, director and community organizer. She is a proud founding member of Pintig Cultural Group and the founding Artistic Director of the Center for Immigrant Resources and Community Arts (CIRCA). Her work includes performing, directing, producing and facilitating theater productions and workshops for all ages. Leopoldo has helped to create a youth heritage curriculum with techniques that utilize a basic integrated theater arts workshop methodology as well as a facilitator of activism and art workshops for college students. She received her B.A. and M.A. in theater from the University of Illinois at Chicago. 

Artistic Director Louie Pascasio is a long-time member of CIRCA Pintig and has directed many of its productions. He was also a member of the Philippine Educational Theater Association and has served as musical director of several of its productions. He has completed his doctoral program on media and community activism. Pascasio has designed CIRCA Pintig Community Workshop Series, among other programming.

Grief and Loss is Power

2-3 p.m. Monday, April 18
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

How does grief and loss differ generationally within your family? What strengths have you seen within yourself and your family members, despite the overflow of grief and loss? The COVID-19 pandemic and the increasing rise of anti-Asian hate crimes have exacerbated further the mental and psychological trauma of Asian American/Asian (Im)migrant/Asian undocumented communities. Presented by Nikki Malazarte, this open and safe discussion amplifies their constant strength and the harnessing of their grief and loss as power.

Nikki Malazarte (she/they/siya) was born in Chicago and raised in Ilo-ilo City, Philippines for seven years. Now based and redefined in Chicago, Malazarte is an interdisciplinary professional who uses intersectional and community-based frameworks to promote equity and identity development. They're currently a trauma counselor working with unaccompanied and asylum seeking minors from Central America, Afghanistan and Nepal.

Discussion On Culture & Faith with asian american intervarsity 

7-8:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 19
Main Campus, Room SU 214

What does it mean to be an Asian American student/faculty who stands in solidarity with Latinx and Black communities? What does the Christian/Catholic faith say about this partnership? After these last full years of AAPI violence and hate, how has our solidarity as Asian Americans changed? Host Asian American InterVarsity invites you to join us for a discussion around Asian American solidarity with Latinx and Black communities. 

Dr. Gabriel J. Catanus, a local Filipino-American pastor, theologian and community leader, will share content around this topic and we will spend time discussing our own experiences and ways we can strengthen our solidarity between Latinx and Black communities.

Contact Asian American InterVarsity at or follow them on Instagram at @neiu.aa.iv to get event updates.


3-4 p.m. Wednesday, April 20
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

Sister Talk is a group for self-identified women and/or femme students of color to discuss issues on topics related to race, gender, and personal development hosted by Pedroso Center. In this session, we will explore the impacts of pop culture on the unfair stereotyping and under-representation of Asian women. We will share our own analysis of portrayals of Asian women in popular streaming films and series, including “To All The Boys I Loved Before” and “Never Have I Ever.” Participants are encouraged to share clips and images related to the topic to further enhance this month’s conversation.


3-4 p.m. Thursday, April 21
Main Campus, Pedroso Center, Room B159

MOVie Night: "Parasite"

6:30-8 p.m. Thursday, April 21
Main Campus, Alumni Hall

PIN@Y club hosts a screening of the popular 2019 South Korean film, "Parasite," which was awarded the Best Picture prize at the 2020 Academy Awards.

Synopsis: Greed and class discrimination threaten the newly formed symbiotic relationship between the wealthy Park family and the destitute Kim clan.

Contact PIN@Y club at or follow them on Instagram at @neiupinoy for event updates.

Pedroso Closing Event: COMMUNITY CHECK-IN

2-3 p.m. Friday, April 22
Online via Zoom; sign up to attend

Join the Pedroso Center as we close our APIDA+ Heritage Month celebrations for 2022. This will be an informal session for people to drop by virtually and share with us what event(s) they attended from the heritage month programming, what they liked/disliked about the event(s), and what they learned about the APIDA community from these events.