Wilson Community College is proud to celebrate Asian and Pacific American Heritage Month during the month of May.
Check back throughout the month for more facts and events.
- Material Scientist Peter Tsai PhD invented the N95 respirator in the 1990s, it was originally intended for industrial use. Dr. Tsai patented the creation in 1995, and a year later the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) discovered that the N95 could also block viruses and bacteria. This revelation encouraged its use in healthcare settings, and it has proven to be indispensable during the COVID-19 pandemic, where it continues to save lives. Read more at https://ge.usembassy.gov/meet-the-u-s-scientist-who-invented-the-n95-mask-filter/.
- In 1994, Ajay Bhatt and his team created Universal Series Bus (USB) technology, allowing users to connect different components to computers without extra hassle. The USB hub serves as a “translator” for various devices, making it easier for computers to understand different commands. Read more at https://www.epo.org/news-events/events/european-inventor/finalists/2013/bhatt/feature.html.
- In February 2005, three former employees of PayPal — including Steven Shih Chen — bought the YouTube.com domain, which eventually became the multi-billion-dollar video-sharing platform we all know and use today. Chen served as YouTube’s first chief technology officer, ensuring that users did not run into issues when uploading and streaming videos. Read more at http://asianpacificfund.org/board/steve-chen/.
- Naomi Osaka is a Japanese professional tennis player. She has been ranked No. 1 by the Women’s Tennis Association and is the first Asian player to hold the top ranking in singles. She is a four-time Grand Slam singles champion. Her seven titles on the WTA Tour also include two at the Premier Mandatory level. Read more at https://www.britannica.com/biography/Naomi-Osaka.
- Kamala Devi Harris is an American politician and attorney who is the 49th and current vice president of the United States. She is the first female vice president and the highest-ranking female official in U.S. history, as well as the first African American and first Asian American vice president. Read more at https://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/vice-president-harris/.
- Tiger Woods has won the Masters Tournament five times, the US Open three times, the PGA Championship four times and the British Open three times. With 82 PGA Tour wins, Woods is tied with Sam Snead for most all-time career victories. He is of African American and Asian descent. Read more at https://tigerwoods.com/biography/.
- Native Hawaiian master navigator Nainoa Thompson became the first to practice it again when he combined traditional wayfinding principles and modern science to develop the star compass, a conceptual direction system, in 1980. The star compass is a visual representation of how navigators view the horizon around them to find their way. Read more at https://www.hokulea.com/crewmember/nainoa-thompson/.
- Jackie Chan, originally Chan Kong-sang. Hong Kong-born Chinese stuntman, actor, and director whose perilous acrobatic stunts and ngaging physical humor made him an action-film star in Asia and helped to bring kung Fu movies into the mainstream of American cinema. Read more at https://www.britannica.com/biography/Jackie-Chan.