Asian Pacific Islander American history is a vast field with countless stories spanning continents and generations. Yet when we consider where these stories are most remembered in the country, they tend to be areas far beyond the reach of the South, including San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, New York City, and more.

Statically speaking, immigration patterns and census reports further reinforce these notions as the percentage of APIA identified people tend to gravitate towards more urban areas that contain more prominent ethnic enclaves. In the South, there is less of an incentive, if any at all, to settle down and create a community from the ground up.

Growing up in this kind of environment was hard, and served as one of the largest reasons as to why I sought to make California my home when the chance arose.

But as I look back into where I come from, there’s nothing I’m more proud of than seeing things like Sparks Magazine thrive. It becomes one of the few platforms that allows APIA people to understand who they are and why that matters.

Though the South lacks the same kind of well-known legacies other states are known for when it comes to racial liberation, that does not diminish the potential the region has as a whole. And for this reason I continue to participate in efforts within the South, ensuring that students who care can remain feeling empowered.