I come from a large family with strong ties to each of them. I am the sixth child with three brothers and four sisters. Family is a huge focus for me and has been the origin and basis for most of the significant interests and accomplishments I have in my life. Following the example of older siblings I have spent a significant amount of time traveling abroad. I have spent time in Ecuador, India, China and Denmark in differing volunteer positions, which has greatly shaped the person I have become. I completed a Bachelor’s degree in Communications-Journalism at BYU. I completed a Master’s degree in 2017 in International Affairs and Global Enterprises at the University of Utah, following my interest in foreign languages, cultures and travel.
I have experience in education and currently work for the Refugee and Immigrant Center – Asian Association of Utah as an after school program director at Northwest Middle School. The challenge of providing ESL, math and science homework help and lessons to up to 15 seventh and eighth grade students is very demanding. As I have learned to understand their individual needs and issues, I was able to connect with them on a personal level. The work became very meaningful to me as I continue to help them pursue goals and set them on a course for better success.
Coming from a large family, especially growing up in Utah, I have developed a great appreciation for family relations. I have gained much insight and profound understanding through time spent with family, examples set by older siblings and conversations with wise parents. The relationships developed in family ties have come to greatly outweigh the daily, mundane or even significant accomplishments achieved in my life. It was because of the example of my older sister, who spent a summer working in different orphanages in Quito, Ecuador, that I understood better what I wanted out of life.
I had the chance to visit my sister and spend some time the last two weeks sharing in her experience in Ecuador. It was my first glimpse I had into the thrill and joy of travel and also in participating in significant service. The experiences I had in Ecuador lead me to seek out another opportunity, as a volunteer English teacher in Kayathar, India. I spent the summer of my junior year in high school living as the lone American in a village in southern India, where I grew very close to the 100 students I taught on a daily basis. It became a life changing experience. I sought to make travel and experiencing culture a more significant part of my life. I spent a semester the following year as an English teacher in Zhongshan, China, where I continued to find what I have been searching for in life. I served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Denmark, certainly the last place I would have expected. Yet despite the seeming misfit of the call, I came to really love the people and see the mash of cultures which really seemed to catch my interest.
Despite an interest in cultures, I have had a lot of working experience in the IT field. Therefore, I thought it would be beneficial to have an undergraduate degree in Computer Science. Yet after a year in the program I have found that it is not something that interests me and have instead turned to journalism. I enjoy writing and have spent a significant amount of time writing. I was drawn to the journalism program for the writing and investigative focus. I have published a book titled The Limit of Man’s Potential, describing my experiences traveling and volunteering abroad. In making the change I have considered what career path I would be most adept in pursuing. I would love a career where I could travel, yet I also need a career that is conducive to family life. I have considered international journalism or possibly working with a Non-profit organization or NGO, where eventually I could work the majority of my time in the United States, but also have the opportunity to travel to different countries on a regular basis. I am specifically interested in investigative journalism and writing. I have always had a focus on observing people and learning human behavior better. I believe that will hopefully be a great asset in pursuing a career in investigative journalism or nonprofit organization working in volunteer, education or cultural fields.
This is a basic overview of who I am, my interests, priorities and hopes for the future. I hopeful to gain valuable knowledge in my future endeavors that will help better prepare me for the field of international relations as well as give me a better understanding of what path I need to take in life.