The Vermont Connection


Nathan Panelo


As the Asian American student population grows in United States (U.S.) higher education, so does the demand for resources on campus. One major concern facing Asian Americans today is the cultural pressure from home which often leads to mental health concerns. Many Asian American students acculturate to Western values in United States colleges, and in doing so, sacrifice part of their traditional identities. As Asian American students acculturate to Western values, it becomes difficult for them to relate to their immigrant parents or firstgeneration Asian American parents. In contrast, Asian American students who feel close to their traditional values can find difficulty transitioning into college due to the discrimination toward their culture and lack of social support. This article will identify how acculturation to Western values and parental pressures about academics can leave Asian American students—often referred to as “model minorities”— depressed and emotionally unstable.