May is Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month

  • What are heritage and history months?

    In the United States, heritage and history months are periods within the year that are designated to celebrate and acknowledge the many cultures that make up our nation.  They provide an opportunity to recognize the contributions from various groups and to investigate the rich cultural identities around us.  

    No matter the grade level or curriculum focus, CPS articulates a scope and sequence that focuses on identity and “continuity and change” over time, in grades K-12. This allows students to explore the history of indigenous peoples and the importance and significance of diversity and the changes/effects (including negatives) that are outcomes of power distribution, colonialism, imperialism, etc. 

    Federal and State Recognition of Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month 

    In 1992, the United States Congress passed Public Law 102-450 which annually designated May as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month.  To learn more, see the Library of Congress Asian/Pacific Heritage Month website.  

    On April 13, 2022, Missouri officially proclaimed May as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month

    Leaders you Should Know:  Individuals who have made outstanding contributions to our society.

    Ajay Bhatt:  Indian American computer architect, was instrumental in the creation of the Universal Serial Bus, also known as a USB. (

    Dr. Steven Chu: A St. Louis, Missouri native, Dr. Steven Chu, is a renowned American physicist and co-winner of the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1997.  Dr. Chu was the 12th United States Secretary of Energy and is a proponent of research into renewable energy.  (U.S. Department of Energy)

    U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth:  Currently serving as U.S. Senator for the State of Illinois, Senator Duckworth is an Iraq War Veteran, Purple Heart recipient, and former Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.  She is the first member of the Senate born in Thailand, first member to give birth while in office, and first female member who is an amputee. (Office of the Historian, US House of Representatives, Vouge)

    Maya Lin:  Artist and architect, best known for designing the Vietnam Veterans Memorial built in Washington, DC.  She was also a major contributor to the design of the 438-mile-long Confluence Project in Oregon and Washington.  (National Park Service U.S. Department of the Interior)  Other major works include the Civil Rights Memorial (Montgomery, Al 1989) and The Women's Table (Yale University, New Haven, CT 1993) (

    Patsy Takemoto Mink:  In 1964 she became the first woman of color elected into the U.S. House of Representatives.  She was a key author of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 which advanced gender equity in institutions receiving federal funds and opened opportunities for women in athletics. (Office of Historian, U.S. House of Representatives)