Emily is a second-year student at Barnard College who recently moved to New York City/Lenape land from Vancouver, Canada/unceded Coast Salish territories where they reconnected with its Chinatown through intergenerational community building and grassroots political organizing. Emily is very excited to continue this work in Manhattan's Chinatown with the W.O.W. Project by connecting with the vibrant intergenerational community here and continuing the political conversation about changing Chinatowns. They are very grateful to be a part of the W.O.W team as they are constantly inspired by and learning from their teammates' dedication to justice and community through arts, culture, and activism.
Jade is a mixed, Chinese and Jewish American student in her last year at Barnard College, where she studies urban sociology and environmental science. She loves learning about neighborhood histories, and is writing a senior thesis on critical cartography and counter-mapping practices as forms of activism in New York City. In her free time, Jade likes to cook with her friends, make zines, sing in choirs, and ride her bike. Jade is working on W.O.W. Public Programs this year, and is thrilled to be building community and Asian American power through art with the rest of the W.O.W. team!
Cynthia Yashi Tong is a senior at New York University studying Public Policy. Born in Shenzhen, China and raised in Irvine, California, she hopes to connect with her two identities through deeper engagement in the Asian American community. Ever since moving to NYC, Manhattan's Chinatown has been a place of comfort and familiarity for her; Cynthia joined the W.O.W. project to learn how she can not only help preserve the culture and histories of such a meaningful place, but also introduce to more people the beauty of Chinatown. She can speak Cantonese, Mandarin, and Korean—and can probably beat you in a pork bun eating contest.
Cathy is a current junior in Townsend Harris High School and joined WOW not only for their meaningful aspirations, but as a stepping stone to gain better communication skills. WOW provides her with an opportunity to help and preserve the community she grew up in and the rich culture ingrained in this small space. She hopes to grow as a person and to be one step closer to being able to answer the question "Who Am I?".
Fanny is a first generation Chinese American who has always wanted to explore Chinatown but never had the chance to fully do so. She knows the significance Chinatown holds and has historically represented but wants to dig deeper and learn more about the people and culture while mentally etching the map of Chinatown in her head. Fanny is excited to be a part of W.O.W because it gives her the opportunity to get to learn more about the landmark and intergenerational community through art, culture, and activism. She strives to actively participate and form meaningful relationships in order to better understand the community.
Raina Liu is currently a freshman at Columbia University. They were born in Manhattan and raised in Cleveland, Ohio by Chinese immigrant parents. They joined the WOW Project to get more in touch with their Chinese American identity and roots, especially through a young/queer perspective. They hope to make their parents proud.