Journal #3

November 19th, 2009
Posted in Journal Entry Three
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Participating in the Community Service Project is an interesting experience to me. Unlike other projects, this one allows us to choose the organization we like to work for and we would stick with it for a considerably long time. As fun as it sounds, we were just equally clueless at the beginning. Us group members rarely discussed about it, but in fact, we didn’t even know each other well when this group was formed. However, we all had the passion helping the community and we knew we would devote as much as possible to get this done.

Choosing the right organization was a rather easier step. It didn’t take long for us to agree on choosing one that is close to Baruch. After we were introduced to www.idealist.org in one of the FRO sessions, NYC Audubon caught our eyes. Not only is it near Baruch campus but it also meets the area we are interested – animal protection – in this case, birds specifically.

When researching about this organization, Internet became the primary source of what we were looking for. Their website provided lots of information regarding what they had achieved and what they seek to gain in the future. After seeing the beautiful pictures of birds on their site, we were more committed to NYC Audubon.

At the same time we had developed good friendship among the group. Sometimes we would chat online to check on each other’s progress and give advices.  As time went by we obtained more and more information and divided the tasks. As we were instructed, we should look in depth into the organization and tried to examine how it operated. This was when their website couldn’t fulfill our need anymore. The information we found seemed vague without detailed addressing

So we turned to the library database, intending to verify its reputation. Also we looked into the funds and acts they mentioned in their annual report to see if they really exist, and if yes, what exactly are they. For times we also contacted the members of the organization, trying to make our task concrete and find out what we are going to do next term. Sadly, we were told that we wouldn’t be directly working with birds as we expected but to work on a publication for educational purpose.

Throughout the process I feel that communication is the most important “resource” ever found. What is written down is dead and reading will become boring. However, once we started to exchange ideas and asked each other opinions, the whole thing just came to life and everything seemed to work right again. And isn’t it true that college is not about what we learn but how we learn? “How” certainly includes communication, which I think is the most precious resource in Baruch, because Baruch has so many bright, innovative students. Working with them, success comes with no doubt.

Journal Entry #2

November 4th, 2009
Posted in Journal Entry Two
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I position myself to be a real scholar when I earn the title as a Baruch Scholar. Being a real scholar means a lot in my mind. First is to maintain and improve the GPA, as suggested in the program policy, that the base is academic success. Of course I should study as best as I can to gain respect as a scholar. SAT, Regents and other glorious high school records lay in the past. I look in the future as a college student, see all the obstacles I can possibly imagine and fight my way through. Persistence and consistency are essential to be a real Scholar.  Second is to develop my moral concepts and basically be a good person. My parents always tell me that the most important thing college is going to teach me is not solid knowledge, but how to fit myself in the society better. As a real scholar I should be charming, patient and able to handle all my highs and lows. Third is to give back to our society. Reputation comes with great responsibilities. The whole society is looking upon us. Being a real scholar I should also be a pioneer and leader in community services. I have attended several walkathons and participated in fund raising activities. And I had a wonderful time teaching new immigrant children. It’s so great staying in a community like that where we all care about one another. I feel like by doing community services I can finally contribute my own strength to make the society better, which is above all the stuffs I learn in school, and really see the progress and results. Given all the opportunities as a Baruch Scholar, I shall stick with my three main goals and work the best out of it.

Journal Entry #1

October 2nd, 2009
Posted in Journal Entry One
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This seems to be the easiest topic, but the hardest one at the same time as well. All of a sudden my life, my past becomes ambiguous. It is not that I don’t know about my life, but rather I know it too well, too profoundly that I can’t pick up specific examples to chat about. And self-being comes to a total stranger when I try to answer what kind of person I am. Nevertheless I think it over and try to find interrelationships that make sense in my mind.

I was born in a small southern city in China and was also the single child due to the government policy. Thanks to that I gained all the attention my parents could offer and had the best family environment I now could imagine. Even though we were not rich, not even close, we lived highly upon satisfaction. My parents were somehow traditional yet open- sighted. They valued a lot on traditional concepts about “good” and “evil”, meaning there was always a definite line between these two. When it was a “no”, my father meant it, and would stare at me harshly. This stare, shaped my personality along way, and kept me from doing what I otherwise would have done, disrespecting others, stealing, gangbanging, etc. My father had not yet completed elementary school but my mother a college graduate, who is rarely anywhere to be found in a small city like ours. They together made a great example of what parents meant, with me benefited the most from. Since I was 5 we constantly went to vocations and trips whenever we had time. Once we were up to mountaintop where snow blocked the paths and had to take the cable car down; we walked the way through Great Wall and were proud to claim now we were “real Chinese”; not to mention other numerous gorgeous towns and cities we had been to. My parents believed that these trips had dramatic impact on intelligence building because I had already have the insight of how the society functioned built-in. And it was true! Books can tell you how forest look, but never lead you through the smell and the moist until you experience it. They opened up every possible way I could take interest in, and so I had learned violin, piano, bugle, drawing, calligraphy, kung fu and many others that I forgot. Though I was never expert in any category, I did come to the society prepared to challenge and being challenged.

In 2007 we moved to America. It was another long journey, however, without my father this time because of his tuberculosis. I remembered the first day going to school I had to leave after sitting in for 2 hours because of lacking eligible medical forms. This really embarrassed me and showed me how rigid this society was, that is, everything ran in an explicit order and personal emotions play minor role in decision making. However, things always got better after the first stage, and because of my out-going attitude and great enthusiasm in new atmosphere, I soon met a lot of new friends, mainly Chinese immigrants just like me (the high school I was in had about 250 students and 90% of whom were not native born). As I became more and more familiar with this country and had my 18th birthday, my family situation was indeed going downward. It was when my father had serious problems with his liver and lungs and spent 2 months in hospital, costing almost everything we owned in China. Life in America was a brand new start, with at least our property in China as backup, but all of which seemed to evaporate in these two months. My mother was also in deep concern about father’s health condition and flew back to take care of him, leaving me to live alone for another 3 months. In these days I experienced life I never had as a single child, and had to bear all the responsibilities up at once, not only domestically but also had to have a good grade in school. They were the days when I felt really stressed out but fulfilled too. Everyday I had to bargain with the old guys, buy the food I need and make them into eatable dishes. I mopped the floor, did the laundries (not the mechanic ones but manual because I had to save every quarter I had) and sometimes cleaned the toilet. I missed my parents but dared not to call them because I simply didn’t want to cry. These days, not very pleasant, did teach me a great lesson on life, in which I treasured every moment I had with my family now and none of the “obstacles” really seemed to be problematic now.

This February my father finally overcame his tuberculosis and came to America. And now I am a Baruch scholar, I hope all I have gone through can help me in a way, to manage my time more efficiently and solve the problems more systematically. I haven’t decided what major I want to be in. At first I thought about Actuarial Science or something business-related, but then I discovered that I didn’t like the whole idea of business at all. Though I knew Baruch is famous for its business program, something did flash through my mind, so sparkling that I couldn’t suppress it. That is, I want to be in educational field, maybe a high school teacher, to spread out what I was passionate in (math, history, art, etc.). I am not sure for now if this was just an impulse or my goal, and I am waiting to find out during my freshman year. And all these come together to be who I am now.

Hello world!

September 3rd, 2009
Posted in Uncategorized
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