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ERIC Number: EJ861843
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Sep-9
Pages: 1
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1557-5411
Finding Their Identities
Lum, Lydia
Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, v26 n15 p22 Sep 2009
Every time Dr. Larry Shinagawa teaches his "Introduction to Asian American Studies" course at the University of Maryland (UMD), College Park, he finds that 10 to 20 percent of his students are adoptees. Among other things, they hunger to better comprehend the social and political circumstances overseas leading to their adoption. In response, UMD officials hope to roll out a new course on "The Adoptee Experience" as early as next year. It's one of many progressive efforts at UMD funded in part by a historic, two-year $2.4 million grant now in its second year. Asian Americans make up about 15 percent of UMD's student body. The majority are so-called "1.5 immigrants" who came to the U.S. as children and became the first in their family to attend a U.S. college. Chinese and Koreans are perhaps the largest subgroups. Adoptees are growing increasingly common. Many of their adoptive parents are White, middle- and upper-class but unable to personally provide cultural education, identity and consciousness. A course on "The Adoptee Experience" would help them--and others--better understand China's one-child policy and how and why it has caused many people there to give up infant girls. And, better understand the cultural stigma in South Korea that burdens unwed mothers, causing them to give up children. Or, the sociocultural belief among some parents there that their children are better off in U.S. schools--and therefore with adoptive parents--than in the more-rigorous, hyper-competitive Korean education system. A course focusing on transnational adoptees is one of many being planned at UMD. Others are likely to examine multiracial populations as well as Asian American film and media.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: China; Maryland; South Korea