DSST: College View students share the importance of honoring culture and tradition for AAPI month
As we wrap up AAPI Month, we want to highlight some students at DSST: College View High School who are making sure the Asian culture is honored and seen not just at their school but across the DSST network.
They are part of a CVHS dance team and for Senior Signing Day, they performed a traditional Vietnamese Fan Dance. For the dance, they wore outfits are called Áo Dài, which are modernized versions of what dynasties and royals would wear in the past in Vietnam.
We asked the team to tell us about AAPI representation and what it means to participate in a dance group that honors the culture, here is what they had to say:
What does AAPI representation mean to you?
- "I think seeing more people that are like me, especially in our school, which is Hispanic dominant, is really important. Finding people who look like you and share the same experiences as you make you able to connect to each other, and it's important to do that not only here, but everywhere. It's also important to note that not just East Asians are a part of our community. Remember countries like India, Indonesia, Singapore, Laos, and the other, smaller countries and Pacific Islanders all need to be represented as well." – Sammie Nguyen, 9th grade
- "I think it's really important to have AAPI representation because all of my friends and I are a part of the AAPI community and it's really important to be heard. Denver has a lot of people in the AAPI community, and they don't always have an opportunity to speak, so it's really nice to be and feel seen." – Venette Duong, 11th grade
- "Representation of our community allows it to be showcased rather than be depicted by stereotypes in the media and what other people just assume about us." – Adam Vu, 11th grade
How does participating in this dance group honor that?
- "We feel like we are able to represent ourselves how we actually wanted to be represented, rather than what others thought was the 'right' way to have us represented as a culture." – Adam Vu, 11th grade
- "We are happy we are able to share our culture with other people and allow people to see the beauty that we see." - Elizabeth Tran, 9th grade
- "I gained confidence in not only myself but in representing who I am and where I come from." - Venette Duong, 11th grade
DSST is proud to have students and staff who represent all cultures and walks of life across our network. We want everyone to feel honored and seen and we love giving everyone a space to represent their heritage and culture.