Lunch and Learn Series Held Weekly on Thursdays at the AAARCC

January 12, 2023: Operations of PUPD & Challenges Within Law Enforcement, Presenter: Lesley Wiete (PUPD Chief)


Chief Lesley Wiete is a 23-year veteran of the Purdue University Police Department. She began her career as a patrol officer in 1999. She moved through the ranks and was promoted to Sergeant of Patrol in 2002, Lieutenant of Patrol in 2009, Captain of Administrative Services in 2019, Deputy Chief in 2021, and Chief of Police in 2022. Chief Wiete has been responsible for the successful management of home football games and leadership of the patrol division, which is the largest division in PUPD. Chief Wiete holds her bachelor's degree from Purdue and master's degree from the University of Phoenix. In June she graduated from the Northwestern School of Police Staff and Command, which is an intensive leadership and management program for experienced law enforcement officers

January 19, 2023: Value of Sharing our Stories, Presenter: Charlotte Yeung, Amazon Best-Selling Author, Sophomore at Purdue


Charlotte Yeung is an Amazon best-selling author of Isabelle and the Magic Bird, the 2022 Indy Youth Poet Laureate, and a US ICAN Representative to Hiroshima. Her writing has been published on the New York Times, Carnegie Hall, and will be sent to the moon. She recently founded and led a poetry workshop for women and girls in Afghanistan that will result in an exhibition at Purdue Honors College and the Kurt Vonnegut Museum this spring. She is a sophomore at Purdue.

February 2, 2023: My Roles in the Math Department, Presenter: Dr. Kuan-Hua (Joe) Chen, Assistant Department Head- Department of Mathematics


Dr. Kuan-Hua (Joe) Chen is currently the Assistant Department Head of the Department of Mathematics at Purdue University. He was born in Taiwan and then went to live with his grandparents in Brunei before finishing high school in a suburb of Chicago. Dr. Chen attended Purdue University for his undergraduate and graduate degrees in Aerospace Engineering and received his PhD in 2010. He worked first as a Lecturer, then the Administrator of Graduate Teaching Program before becoming the Assistant Head of the math department in 2021.

February 9, 2023: Human-centered design in Computer Graphics Entertainment Practice, Presenter: Dr. Nandhini Giri (Assistant Professor Human Computer Interaction & Entertainment Graphics)


Nandhini Giri, PhD is an Assistant Professor of Human Computer Interaction and Founding Director of Entertainment Futures Lab at the Department of Computer Graphics Technology, Purdue University. Dr. Giri studies the impact of emerging entertainment graphics technologies to develop interactive media systems for authentic human experiences. She also develops design frameworks for expertise development in the computer graphics industry practices. Her notable film credits include Laya (2019), Boss Baby (2017), Home (2015), Penguins of Madagascar (2014), Mr. Peabody and Sherman (2014), Rise of the Guardians (2012), Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted (2012).

February 16, 2023: "Finding Support for LGBTQ+ Asians", A Panel Conversation


February 23, 2023: The Design of the Online Textbook "Learn Japanese Online: Elementary", Presenters: Dr. Atsushi Fukada (Professor of Japanese and Linguistics) & Dr. Mariko Wei (Associate Professor of Japanese, Linguistics, and Asian Studies)


Atsushi Fukada (Ph.D. 1987, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) is Professor of Japanese and Linguistics at Purdue University. His research interests include all areas of Japanese linguistics, pragmatics, technology, and language pedagogy. Mariko Wei (Ph.D. 1998, Georgetown University) is Associate Professor of Japanese and Linguistics at Purdue University. Her research interests are second language acquisition, language pedagogy, and language disorders.

March 2, 2023: Understanding Heritage Speaker Language Processing: What Can We Learn From Real-Time Experiments? Presented by: Vanessa Sheu (Ph.D. Candidate in the Department of Linguistics)




Vanessa Sheu is a 4th-year PhD candidate in Linguistics at Purdue University (M.A. Teachers College, Columbia University, B.A. University of Michigan). Her area of research is in psycholinguistics and real-time sentence processing, focusing on Mandarin heritage speakers. Heritage speakers are children of immigrant parents who speak a minority language. Although heritage speakers acquire the minority/heritage language first in home settings, they become more fluent in the dominant language upon entrance into formal schooling. The loss of a heritage language impacts heritage speakers’ connection to heritage cultures and communities. Vanessa is interested in experimental linguistics as a means to understand the characteristics of heritage speaker language processing, which can inform pedagogical approaches for heritage language maintenance. Such efforts can keep heritage speakers connected with heritage cultures and develop an underutilized linguistic resource for society at large.

The talk presents ongoing research in the real-time processing of complex sentences among native speakers, advanced learners, and heritage speakers of Mandarin. These processing differences may shed light on the unique bilingual profile of heritage speakers, and more generally, reveal the importance of the age of acquisition and language dominance in sentence processing.

March 9, 2023: Understanding PUR-1: a Nuclear Research Reactor at Purdue, Presenter: Riziki Oktavian (Ph.D. Candidate in the School of Nuclear Engineering)



March 23, 2023: Cello: The Closest to the Human Voice, Dr. Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun (Clinical Associate Professor in the Division of Music in the Rueff School of Design, Art, & Performance.



Kristen Yeon-Ji Yun, a Clinical Associate Professor in the Music Department at Purdue University, is active as a soloist, chamber musician, musical scholar, and clinician. Her recent CD “Summerland” has excellent reviews from New Classics UK, American Record Guide, etc., and was broadcast nationwide by radio stations such as WQXR, WBAA, and NPR Sonatas and Soundscapes. She has toured many countries including Malaysia, Mexico, Spain, France, Germany, Taiwan giving series of successful concerts and master classes. She is a prize winner in competitions around the world including the 11th Annual Competition in the Performance of Music from Spain and Latin America, Seoul National Competition, and Concerto Competition at Indiana University. Before joining in Purdue, she worked as Assistant Professor (2012-2018) and Associate Professor (2018-2021) of Lower Strings at Colorado Mesa University, and taught at Indiana Wesleyan University, DePauw University, Indiana University String Academy, Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, and Seoul National University as an instructor. Yun was a principal cello in Grand Junction Symphony Orchestra, and a regular member in Lafayette Symphony Orchestra, and Korean Symphony Orchestra. She received Doctor of Music on cello performance in 2012 from Indiana University at Bloomington, where she studied with the world-famous cellist Janos Starker. She has a Master and a Bachelor degrees from Seoul National University. Yun performs on a French cello, made by Guersan in 1766

March 30, 2023: Impact of Cultural Center Programming on Comprehensive Multicultural Inclusion in Higher Education, Presenter: Mili Jha (K - 12 Outreach Coordinator & Honors Academic Counselor - Oklahoma State University)


Cultural centers, or identity-based public spaces, play a crucial role in fostering multicultural connection and knowledge. Universities often house multiple cultural centers to better integrate diverse student backgrounds into campus life, provide identity-based support for students, and offer a venue for all to learn about various cultures. Moreover, these centers do not have an isolated impact solely on college campuses; cultural centers adopt pivotal community roles of education and support. The impacts described here are only a few of the ways cultural centers, such as the Purdue University Asian American and Asian Resource and Cultural Center (AAARCC), provide positive impacts on their surrounding community. While these centers are also hubs of research and praxis on diversity, inclusion, and wellbeing, there is still much work to do in order to best integrate students of all backgrounds. This paper analyzes the history of AAARCC programming from 2020 to 2022, contextualizes the Center’s efforts alongside other Big 10 universities, and highlights areas for improvement in the comprehensive representation of minority Asian populations.

April 6, 2023: Book Talk & Reception: Fighting Invisibility Asian Americans in the Midwest, Presenter: Dr. Monica Trieu (Associate Professor of American Studies)

In Fighting Invisibility, Dr. Trieu argues that we must consider the role of physical and symbolic space to fully understand the nuances of Asian American racialization. By doing this, we face questions such as, historically, who has represented Asian America? Who gets to represent Asian America? This book shifts the primary focus to Midwest Asian America to disrupt—and expand beyond—the existing privileged narratives in the United States and Asian American history.

Drawing from in-depth interviews, census data, and cultural productions from Asian Americans in Ohio, Wisconsin, Nebraska, Minnesota, Illinois, Iowa, Indiana, and Michigan, this interdisciplinary research examines how post-1950s Midwest Asian Americans navigate identity and belonging, racism, educational settings, resources within co-ethnic communities, and pan-ethnic cultural community. Their experiences and life narratives are heavily framed by three pervasive themes of spatially defined isolation, invisibility, and racialized visibility.

April 12, 2023: Afternoon Chat with Artist Bao Ho (Hong Kong Based Street Artist and Illustrator)


Bao is a Hong Kong born and based self-taught artist who mainly loves freestyle work with murals and illustrations. She started her career in 2015 and shortly afterwards collaborated with various international brands. Bao has travelled and worked on projects in all corners of the globe including Australia, Switzerland, UK, France, Taiwan, Mainland China, Japan, Indonesia, Italy and Czech Republic.

Clients / Collaborated Include: Nike, Tumi, K11 Art Mall, K11 Musea, The Simpsons / 20th Century Fox / Upfest, Foot Locker, Grand Hyatt​, Mandarin Oriental, The Peninsula Hotels, Nippon Paint, Audi, Mercedes Benz, RedBull, Google, Microsoft. Starbucks, Uber, and many more!


915 5th Street (corner 5th/Waldron)
West Lafayette, IN 47907

Phone: 765-496-0488  
Fax: 765-494-1225

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Center Hours

Summer 2023 Hours (begins May 26th)

Remote Work:
Monday & Friday
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

In-person hours:
9:00 AM - 4:00 PM

Fall & Spring Semester Hours

Monday - Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM

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