Our Story

A brief timeline 

  • 1854 - Yung Wing (pictured right) is the first Asian to graduate from Yale and the first Chinese student to graduate with a bachelor’s degree in the United States.
  • 1960 - Yale’s Asian American population includes Chinese, Korean, and Japanese American students.
  • 1969 - Women are able to enroll at Yale College subsequently impacting the number of Asian American students. The Asian American Students Association, now the Asian American Students Alliance (AASA), is formed.
  • 1970-81 - AASA lobbies for a room in Durfee Hall. After outgrowing the space, they relocate to a basement in Bingham before finally settling on Crown Street. 
  • 1990-2001 - Yale’s Asian American population rises 15%. Political, social, community service, and academic groups form.  
  • 2001 - Yale adopts a need-blind admissions policy with a conscious effort to recruit international students. The number of Asian American undergraduate student organizations rises to 15.
  • 2001-2014 - The Asian American Cultural Center continues to be a valuable resource for Asian and Asian American students. The number of affiliated student organizations continue to grow.
  • 2014 - Yale hosts the first Asian American Alumni Reunion.
  • 2015 - The AACC hosts Yale’s first Asian American Studies Conference.
  • 2016 - The AACC opens the Gary Y. Okihiro Library following extensive interior renovation. Okihiro, professor of international and public affairs at Columbia University and founding director of Columbia’s Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race, donated 2,000+ of his personal titles relating to Asian American and comparative ethnic studies.