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Hi, I’m Kirin Macapugay

I am a proud community college tenured professor, public servant to the state of California, community organizer, Indigenous Person, mother, and someone just trying to do good things. I hold family, community, and culture close to my heart. 

02_My Students 


Professor and Faculty Lead of Human Services & Social Work, Program Director for the Program for Engaged Educational Resources, Co-Director of our AANAPISI Program ICAN (Inclusive City Achievement Network, San Diego City College

Vice Chair, Higher Education Committee Chair, California Commission on Asian Pacific Islander American Affairs

Advisor, Asian Pacific Islander Advisory to the Office of the City of San Diego Mayor

Member, Council on Social Work Education Curriculum Committee on Military Social Work 

Advisor, University of California San Diego Community and Scientific Advisory Board, LinkUP project 

Founder, and Executive Director, Asian Pacific Islander Community Actions

Co-Founder, IKAT: Indigenous Knowledge, Art, Truth

Chair, Made in Paradise Hills

Advisor, Peoples Collective for Justice and Liberation

Steering Committee Member, FIERCE: Filipinx Igniting Engagement for Re-Imagining and Collective Em(power)ment

Vice President Emeritus, Southwestern Community College District Governing Board

Founding Board Member, San Diego Asian Pacific Islander Coalition

Mentor, San Diego Leadership Alliance



Kirin Macapugay Day declared in the County of San Diego on December 12, 2022

Proclamations and Commendations, Southwestern Community College District, United States Congress, California Senate, California State Assembly, County of San Diego, City of San Diego, City of Chula Vista 

50 Most Influential Asians in San Diego, San Diego Business Journal, 2022

Civic Excellence Leadership Award, Asian Pacific American Coalition, 2022

"Woman Who Inspires US,"  San Diego Magazine, 2021 

District Shero, County of San Diego District 1, 2021

Civil Rights Woman Leader,   RISE San Diego, 2015

Women of Influence,  Connected Women of Influence, 2015 

Nonprofit Leadership Award, Asian Pacific American Coalition, 2014




Doctorate of Social Work I University of Southern California, anticipated completion, 2024
NCORE, the National
Conference on Race and Ethnicity Scholar, 2023
MSW I San Diego State University, 2002
BA Psychology I San Diego State University, 2000
Certificate, Indigenous Peoples Rights I Columbia X, 2020
CITI Certification, Human Research, Social-Behavioral Human Subjects, University of Southern California, 2023


Social Work & Human Services

Social Work  Curriculum

Community Organizing & Social Justice

Civic Engagement and Policy 

Indigenous Igorot Culture and Tradition and the Fil-Am Community




  • Introduction to Social Work, Empowering People & Communities, Kirin Macapugay, Cognella Publishing, 2019

  • “Community to Capitol: A Framework for State Level Advocacy for Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Students in Higher Education,” Cirian Villavicencio & Kirin Macapugay, UCLA AAPI NEXUS Journal, April 2024 

  • “Understanding and Dismantling the The Model Minority Stereotype,” Addressing Anti-Asian Racism with Social Work Advocacy and Action, Lailaine Sevillano & Kirin Macapugay, Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2024

  • “The SENSEI Framework for Student Empowerment, a Culturally Affirming Pedagogy,” Kirin Macapugay & Benjamin Nakamura, Genealogy: Shifting Structural Power and Advancing Transformational Changes Among Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC): Elevating the Voices of the Community, May 2024, under review and revision

  • “Atang to Kuwentos: The Power of Communal Care as Decolonial Mental Health Praxis Among Pilipinx Americans” Lailaine Sevillano, Joanna LaTorre, Kirin Macapugay, Gabrielle Aquino-Adriatico, et al., under review by American Psychologist Practicing Decolonial and Liberation Psychologies, September 2023, under review and revision

  • “What I Have Learned from Warrior Women,” Pin[a/x]y Activism in Theory and Practice. Edited by Amanda Solomon, Candice Tan, Jen Soriano, February 2023

  • “Paradise Hills, 1994,” Reclaiming our Stories, Edited by Paul Alexander & Manuel Lopez, San Diego City Works Press, 2020

  • “Paradise Hills,” Pilipinx Radical Imagination Reader, Edited by Melissa Nievera-Lozano and  Tony Santa Ana, Philippine American Writers and Artists, Inc, 2017

  • “Lolas,” They Magazine, Edited by Maureen Abugan, 2017

  • “The Youth Canao,” Alliance for California Traditional Arts, 2013 

“How will You Create Positive Change, Edited by Leah Oviedo, 2012


Kirin has been featured and appeared in:


KPBS San Diego

KGTV 10 News


Fox 5

The Filipino Channel 

Adobo Nation


San Diego Union Tribune

San Diego Magazine

Voice of San Diego 

Asian Journal

Voyager San Diego Magazine

This Filipino American Life Podcast

Yellow Ranger Podcast

Filipino Press

Alliance for California Traditional Arts

National Association of Social Workers

For speaking engagements or to just say hi,

email me at:



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