The Southeast Asia Program (SEAP) was founded in 1950 to promote the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge about countries, cultures and languages of the region. Its twenty core and eight emeritus faculty members have collective knowledge of Southeast Asia, which amounts to one of the world’s greatest concentrations of expertise on this region. Six language lecturers teach 4 levels of study in Burmese, Indonesian, Khmer, Tagalog, Thai, and Vietnamese.
The U. S. Department of Education has continuously (without interruption since 1958) recognized SEAP as a Title VI National Resource Center. As such, it trains experts on the region and strives to meet strategic national needs in government, business, science and professional fields, as well as provides K-16 Outreach.
SEAP has three unique resources: the John M. Echols Collection on Southeast Asia, the George McT. Kahin Center for Advanced Research on Southeast Asia, and SEAP Publications. The first is the largest collection on the region (over 500,000 monographs in 162 indigenous languages). The Kahin Center is an academic home to SEAP graduate students, visiting fellows and scholars, faculty members and SEAP's Publication and Outreach offices. SEAP publishes Southeast Asian monographs and language textbooks, including the only journal exclusively on Indonesia. It also makes downloads of its Cornell Modern Indonesia Project (CMIP) and SEAP Data papers accessible gratis.