Press Release: Immigrant History Initiative Partners with Director of Who Killed Vincent Chin? on K-12 Lesson Plans for Award-Winning Documentary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Odette Wang
[New Haven, CT] June 16, 2022 – The Immigrant History Initiative (IHI), one of the nation’s leading non-profits dedicated to creating original educational resources and programs for the learning of Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) history in schools and communities, is partnering with acclaimed film director Christine Choy to create the official lesson plans accompanying Who Killed Vincent Chin?, the 1987 Oscar-nominated documentary that tells the story of the murder of Vincent Chin.
2022 marks the 40th anniversary of the murder of Vincent Chin, a Chinese American, by two white men in Detroit, Michigan on June 19, 1982. The documentary Who Killed Vincent Chin?, recently added to the National Registry of Films by the Library of Congress and restored by the Academy of Motion Pictures and Sciences, tells a compelling story about race, class, violence and the law, and captures a critical moment in American history.
Drawing on its track record as a 501(c)3 organization founded in 2017 by Julia Wang and Kathy Lu, two Yale Law School-trained attorneys dedicated to teaching AAPI history at the K-12 level and in communities, IHI is creating a comprehensive curriculum using exclusive access to film clips and materials to effectively introduce Who Killed Vincent Chin? and its timely themes about anti-Asian hate to new generations of youth, parents, families, and educators.
The creation of Immigrant History Initiative’s official Who Killed Vincent Chin? curriculum in partnership with Christine Choy is funded by the Edward Cheng and Mary Chen Giving Foundation.
"Partnering with Immigrant History Initiative will bring Who Killed Vincent Chin? to classrooms across the country and ensure that the next generation has access to these important stories,” said Christine Choy, director of Who Killed Vincent Chin? “The film includes so many rich and complex questions around identity, belonging, and accountability that are still relevant today. I'm excited to see students learn the story of Vincent Chin and grapple with these questions as they navigate a country and a society that is more divided than ever.”
“We are beyond thrilled to be working with Christine Choy to bring her groundbreaking film to classrooms across the country,” said Julia Wang, co-founder of Immigrant History Initiative. “The Vincent Chin story has critical resonance in today’s climate and it deserves to be taught in our schools, where the introduction of Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) history and stories is just underway. We will be creating a suite of standards-aligned lesson plans, using Who Killed Vincent Chin? as a springboard to tackle important issues of race, justice, and collective action.”
The lesson plans will cater to different age groups and will explore important themes in racial identity, law, solidarity and movement building and will be released for use in schools across the U.S. in 2023.
The partnership with filmmaker Christine Choy marks the second time IHI has created educational resources to accompany a nationally broadcast documentary. IHI created and edited official PBS Learning Media lessons for the award-winning documentary Asian Americans and has trained hundreds of teachers and educators across the U.S. on AAPI history.
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About the Co-Founders of Immigrant History Initiative
JULIA WANG immigrated to the U.S. at age 9. As a child, Julia loved learning history but never saw stories about people like her and her family. She studied History at Harvard University and the University of Cambridge, where she was a Gates Scholar. Since graduating from Yale Law School, she has worked as a lawyer and at several global nonprofits. Julia has published several articles in publications including The Atlantic and HuffPost on immigration and Asian American identity.
KATHY LU is a former Skadden Fellow who has spent the last decade working in education, Asian American studies, and organizing. She studied International Relations at Pomona College and worked in public schools as an AmeriCorps member. At Yale Law School, she led the Asian Pacific American Law Student Association and the Immigration Legal Services clinic. Kathy has worked as a nonprofit attorney with Asian survivors of gender violence and vulnerable families of color.
About Who Killed Vincent Chin?
Who Killed Vincent Chin? is a 1987 American documentary film by Christine Choy and Renee Tajima-Peña that recounts the murder of Vincent Chin. It was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature and later broadcast as part of the PBS series POV. In 2021, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".