05/28/13 During the month of May 2013, Culver-Union Township Public Library is celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with an eye-catching, multimedia display completed by Reference/Adult Services Clerk, Esmeralda Rodgers. Esmie, as she is known by patrons and staff, is from the Phillipines, and as such, she brings to the library a rich understanding of Asian Pacific American heritage and culture.
Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, commonly referred to as APA Heritage Month, is a national celebration which was established in 1977 after origination in a congressional bill. APA was designated as a month-long celebration in May of 1990 by President George H. W. Bush. The month of May was intended to commemorate immigration of the first Japanese to the United States on May 7, 1843, and also for the anniversary of the transcontinental railroad, completed on May 10, 1869. Chinese immigrants made up the majority of workers laying the tracks for the transcontinental railroad. To commemorate APA Heritage Month, communities celebrate with festivals, government-sponsored activities, and educational activities for students of all ages. The theme for Asian Pacific American Heritage Month 2013 was “Leadership to Meet the Challenge of a Changing World.”
Esmie’s APA Heritage Month display is located at the main entrance to the Culver-Union Township Public Library, and includes books, DVD’s, and cd’s all available for checkout by patrons. Next to the materials table, there is a board with information cards about many famous individuals of Asian Pacific American heritage, such as fashion designer Vera Wang, novelist/poet Ha Jin, and cellist Yo-Yo Ma. To complete the display, Esmie researched well-known individuals of Asian Pacific American heritage in order to provide a wide range of talented individuals for patrons to read and learn more about as they enter the library. The display includes writers, artists, political figures, athletes, musicians, actors/actresses, and even astronauts. It is our hope that Esmie’s APA Heritage Month display successfully promotes CUTPL’s intention to foster our patrons’ understanding of and appreciation for the contributions of many different peoples to the richness of our American culture.
Pictured: Esmeralda Rodgers, Reference/Adult Services Clerk, Culver-Union Township Public Library. Photo Credit: Andrew Baker, Information Technology Manager & Webmaster, Culver-Union Township Public Library