Honoring AAPI Stories and Intersectionality with DJ Kuttin Kandi

DJ Kuttin Kandi is a retired hip hop DJ and activist, organizer, writer and artist who also co-founded Asian Solidarity Collective, a San Diego organization working to create Asian solidarity with other marginalized and oppressed communities. She is an alumni of Meridian’s Next Level program. For Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) heritage month, we’re excited to bring you her perspective on intersectionality and storytelling.   What does AAPI month mean to you? Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage months means many things to me. First, it really means that not only must I be proud of my heritage but...

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“Next Level is a Miracle Machine”: Glen “DiViNCi” Valencia

This post was reblogged from Next Level, an initiative of the U.S. Department of State, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and Meridian International Center; and written by Joe Schloss, Next Level Education and Alumni Outreach Director. People come to Next Level with a wide range of life experiences. Some are just setting out on their artistic path, while others already have years of experience behind them. Beatmaker Glen “DiViNCi” Valencia falls into the latter category, which provided him with a unique perspective on his Next Level experience as part of Team Honduras in 2016. Best known...

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Jam Sessions on View at the US Diplomacy Center

As we move into Jazz Appreciation Month, the Meridian Center for Cultural Diplomacy (MCCD) celebrates the unifying power of music through Jam Session: America’s Jazz Ambassadors Embrace the World. After runs in Africa, East Asia and the Pacific, the Middle East, South Asia and Latin America, Jam Session is on view at the U.S. Diplomacy Center now through May 18. Jazz Diplomacy was born in 1956 when Congressman Adam Clayton Powell Jr. proposed that Dizzy Gillespie form a jazz ensemble to represent the U.S. abroad. Competition between the Soviet Union and the United States was increasing, and these musical...

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