So you want to know more about KASY

What is KASY?

The Korean American Students at Yale was established in 1984 by a group of students who wanted to promote the cultural, political, and social interests of the community of Korean Americans at Yale. In the twenty-plus years since its inception, KASY has grown both in size and influence, but still remains dedicated to its founding principles. Known as a vibrant and thriving undergraduate organization, KASY functions as a promoter of cultural awareness, a vehicle for political action, and most importantly, a tightly-knit family. Come to one of our events and check us out!

What exactly does KASY do?

KASY members are active year-round either through KASY itself or through one of KASY’s numerous affiliate groups. These activities can be broken down into one of three categories: cultural, political or social.

students dancing and playing instrumentsCultural Activities

One of KASY’s chief goals is to promote Korean culture awareness. Unity, the Korean drumming and dance troupe of Yale, has been a vital affiliate group to this end, and often performs at KASY cultural events in addition to their own shows.

Other KASY cultural events include the twice-a-year Adopted Friends picnic, during which adopted Korean children from the tri-state area team up with a KASY mentor for a day of fun and Korean heritage education. Additionally, the Yale Korean American Mentorship Program (YKAMP) exists for middle and high school students. Finally, the yearly KASY cultural show combines a variety of performances into one supersized show. Themes of the cultural show have varied over the years, but all deal with the Korean American identity.

Political Activities

KASY has historically stood at the forefront of Korean American intercollegiate affairs, founding both KASCON (Korean American Student Conference) and KIN (Korean Intercollegiate Network). Conferences such as these have spurred growth and awareness in the political arena via special guest lectures and the development of other political subgroups.

One example is a very recent and very explosive political organization founded here at Yale in conjunction with KASCON in 2004. LiNK (Liberation in North Korea, www.linkglobal.org) was formed to educate the world about North Korea, specifically with regards to the human rights crisis in the country and its political context. Since its small beginnings as a student organization, LiNK has since grown in size and scope with chapters across the nation and around the globe. Today, LiNK works with other NGOs to aid North Korean defectors and to continue public education.

In addition, KASY is also involved with the many political activities of the Asian American Cultural Center (AACC), which houses all of the Asian culture groups at Yale. Joint KASY and AACC efforts have brought Korean language and culture courses to Yale, and further work in this direction is expected to continue.

students at pizza partySocial Activities

The essence of KASY is really the close friendships and feeling of family that emerge from spending time together. It can be said that much of the organization is built on a foundation of close relationships and fun times. KASY tries very hard to foster these good relationships and provide fun experiences through the numerous social events that are planned throughout the school year.

One of the most popular and long-term KASY social events is the KASY family. At the beginning of the year, freshmen (generally one guy and one girl) are paired with two upperclassmen “parents” to form a family. The family provides the freshmen with a familiar group during the sometimes-chaotic first year of college as well as lots of free food. In addition, families provide a means of interaction between freshmen and upperclassmen who might otherwise not be as accessible and ultimately create bonds that often last throughout one’s entire time at Yale.

students at campuswide Blackout danceKASY also throws several large social events, such as the campuswide Blackout dance, in addition to the very numerous movie nights, study breaks, and late night eating escapades (very numerous indeed).

How can I get involved?

Just show up! We love to meet new people, and any and everybody is invited to all of the KASY events throughout the year. Details on upcoming events and a calendar schedule of KASY events can be found on this website. Specific questions can be answered by any of the board members, but the best way to learn about KASY is just to talk to and hang out with members. We hope that you will take the time to come and see what KASY is all about.