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Journal #3

Upon researching for the Community Service Project, I started with Baruch Library database. I did not know how much I could find on the library database until the librarian introduced it in one of the Freshman Seminar sessions. I found the information very helpful and I have been using it for other classes since. For the project, I did not know where to start at first but the search engine allowed me to narrow down my choices. Eventually I realized that I would like to do something with children. Although we picked an organization that some members were more familiar with, I was able to identify my stand because of the resources in the library.

I have also utilized the writing center through e-tutoring. I sent them my drafts through e-mail and they have been great helpers. I was able to fix the grammatical errors, which actually brought my grades up. I also joined a club called Chinese Christian Fellowship. CCF allows me to learn more about the school. They always answer my questions regarding the school, especially things that I wouldn’t have known like the copy machines in the library. CCF is not only my network outside of my LC, it is also the bridge between the larger school community and me. CCF emphasizes on reaching out to other people who have needs. This is becoming my motto for helping the society.  Besides the organization that I will be helping in Spring (Adelphi Academy), I am also interested in an organization called Samaritan’s Purse. It is a Christian relief organization. One of their services has been “Operation Christmas Child,” where they ask people to donate shoeboxes full with presents for the children in third world country.  They also give physical aids to countries that suffer from war, diseases, and other disasters. I have learned to recognize more of others’ needs than my own because I know I was given a lot already.

The resources in Baruch College allow me to excel, so much more than I could in high school. I have been doing better since discovering supporting centers like writing center. I am sure I can discover more in this college as I proceed to my second semester. I also understand more about the responsbility as a student through this Community Service Project. Our group is going to help lower grades students and prospective college students. We hope we can guide these students to take on the path to become future leaders and give back to the community.

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Journal #2

One of the most important aspects of college life is to get involved. To prepare for the career before us, connections are essential. Thus, I am more active in my learning environment compared to the years in high school. I became more willing to communicate with other people. I also joined a club (Chinese Christian Fellowship) and became one of the staff members. This club assists me in understanding Baruch community. The members are willing to help me to get involved in college life, so much so that they allowed me to work as a staff.  Through this club, I am gaining valuable experiences. As I am learning to be an example for other Christians in the club, I am also learning to be a leader for the college community as a whole.

Similarly, I hope to achieve these goals in a wider perspective through community services. What scholars should know is not limited to the needs of the college community but the society as a whole. I understand why community service is an essential part in being a Barcuh Scholar: one can never succeed without knowing what the world is doing. It is true that one can learn a lot just by networking with colleagues. But when one is willing to step outside, there are so many more things to learn from. Often times the things one experiences outside of school can change his or her mind-set completely. That is because the school, to a point, is disconnected to the world. A well-rounded person should never be limited to a narrow field. Thus, I am thankful for recognizing our efforts for services. I am sure many Scholars are already doing community services without ever asking to be thanked for, because we know it is something we should do as students of excellence and as persons living in the society.

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Where I Have Been and Where I Am Going

At first this may seem like an immigrant’s story. But that is not what I am trying to get to, as there is nothing special in coming to America while million others have done the same. The differences between immigrants’ stories are perhaps the attitudes they took while they faced challenges. Yet this can be applied to any situation, not just immigration.

When I came to New York City at the age of twelve, I was facing new challenges just as my parents were. Ever since I graduated from elementary school, I felt my parents could no longer guide or help me with the work in school. My parents had never studied in America so they had no idea what it was going to be like. But I understood my obligation as a daughter. My parents came here with me because they wanted me to have a better life than they had. There was really no other reason they should come since they had decent jobs back in Hong Kong. Therefore, I quietly learned by myself and tried my best to speak English like I was born here. I do not know if I succeeded, but I know people would not judge me as a mere immigrant. (However it is not to say that I had lost my Chinese skills. I maintained it and it is as good as my English.)

My path continues onto college and soon onto my career. I am aiming to achieve more than I had. Or I should say, I am not allowed to do less because there is a family behind me.  If I can safely go through this first semester, I believe I will have a greater chance succeeding in college. This first semester is critical and all I can do right now is grip on the chances.

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This is not part of the assignment!

[kml_flashembed movie="" width="425" height="350" wmode="transparent" /]

This is “Deep into the Night” by Hiromi Uehara (keyboardist). Hiromi Uehara is a rising star in Jazz and is getting recognitions from famous Jazz pianists such as Chick Corea and Oscar Peterson.

Almost everyone around me does not listen to Jazz. It is often hard to discuss pieces like this when no one around me appreciates them. (When I show people around me Uehara’s songs, their reactions are mostly “It just sounds like a bunch of noise to me. I don’t seem to hear a melody.” I find that very depressing) Therefore the only way to express my love for this piece is to post it up here, where maybe someone will be able to understand it.

The only people who agree with me are those on Youtube leaving comments. One person said this piece was “intensely relaxing,” which I found very true. This is probably one of my favorite songs from Uehara for its structure of freedom. Music, in general, is structured. No matter how one wish to improvise, there is still a tempo, a key, or even a chord. Yet one can develop freely around these things and create something extraordinary, as in the case of “Deep into the Night.”

Whoever that is reading this, please enjoy!

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