Learn exactly how Asian-Americans lives sucked (and didn't suck), and learn how to make their lives less sucky.


The Pacific Ocean is a really big place. I mean, we're talking big like whoa. It takes a lot of what we like to call "guts" to simply pack up your bags and take a boat all the way across that huge mass of saltwater. Seriously. It's scary to think about leaving behind everything you knew to make a new life in that place called "America," but somehow quite a lot of Asian people did just that.

And what did they get for it?

Dangerous railroad work, rampant discrimination, and, of course, internment during WWII.

Before the 21st century showed its (sadly hoverboard-free) face, all of these experiences snowballed into a proper history for Asian-Americans. And with that history came a distinctive national identity. If you want a unique look at America's last century, but feel like African-American studies is a road too well-traveled, this is the major for you.

So that's what gets you into this major, but what do you get out of it? The answer is, well, lots of things. Asian-American studies is one of those extra shiny, deluxe Swiss Army Knife majors that fits all sorts of careers. Want to take all that juicy teaching and teach it right back to some unsuspecting young'uns? You can do that. Want to become a lawyer that happens to be particularly savvy to Asian-Americans? Knock yourself out, but some law school would probably also help.

There really isn't anything that this major won't help you find a unique spin on.

Famous People who majored in Asian American Studies

  • Alexander Saxton, who helped create the first Asian-American studies program at UCLA
  • Shawn Wong, writer/professor
  • Batman. Because batman studies everything.

Asian-American studies is not one of the most popular majors out there. Unlike, say, English, this major has only been around a few decades, and unlike, say, African-American studies, there wasn't a whole Civil War fought about Asian-Americans. So it's not quite as entrenched in popular culture.

All this means is that you are among the people who decide where this major can go. No pressure or anything.

Percentage of US students who major in Asian American Studies:

0.18% (Area, Ethnic, and Civilization Studies)

Stats obtained from this source.