An annual tradition, Filipinxs and non-Filipinxs of all backgrounds gather to celebrate the culture of the Philippines at FASA’s flagship charity event, Philippine Culture Night (PCN). Through a heart-warming narrative, lively traditional and modern dances staged by FASA and sister organizations, inspiring speeches from strong Filipinx figures, and beautiful live music and poetry, PCN explores the intricacies of Filipinx heritage and the struggles that Filipinxs and Filipinx Americans face today. Awarded “Outstanding Cultural Awareness Program” by the U-M A/PIA Heritage Month Committee, FASA’s 2019 PCN took on the lens of Pamana: Legacy and Heritage and donated over $1,000 to World Medical Relief.
Every year, Filipinos in Alliance (FIA) at the University of Illinois at Chicago hosts Battle of the Bamboo—a cultural dance competition that showcases various traditional Philippine performances. As FIA describes it, “performers have portrayed stories that have been passed down for generations, retold through our rich cultural history and diverse collection of dances in the Philippines.” FASA has participated in Battle of the Bamboo multiple times as both an exhibitionist and a competitor, notably winning third place in 2016 for its rendition of the tribal dance Tagabili. With performances ranging from barrio suite to Philippine mythology, FASA’s most recent showcase in 2020 told The Tale of Handyong and Oryol, incorporating stories from the Bicol region and featuring live, original music played on traditional Philippine instruments.
FASA connects with various external groups throughout the year, with relations ranging from within the University of Michigan to across the country. As a member organization of the United Asian American Organization (UAAO), FASA members can often be found attending and supporting the activities of other Asian American groups on campus. Outside of the University, FASA also collaborates with community organizations for cultural programming and performances, as well as engages in various service opportunities in the Ann Arbor and Metro Detroit areas. Additionally, FASA is a member organization of the Midwest Association of Filipino Americans (MAFA), which allows Filipinx college students across Midwestern campuses to connect through conferences, collaborative events, and more. Overall, FASA provides its members unique opportunities for outreach, prompting individuals to learn from and support the greater Asian and Filipinx community.
During the winter semester, members have the opportunity to expand their leadership and involvement in FASA through the FASA Intern Program. FASA Interns shadow the Executive Board throughout the semester, assisting in activity planning and executing a final intern event. This program is a great chance for members to have fun, further their understanding of FASA, and gain organizational, creative, and teamwork skills valuable to any future leadership position. Click here to read testimonials from previous FASA Interns!