Alex

Picture of a peson with a dog

How I’ve made the most of my Duke experience

I don't think I really have or truly ever will. There's a lot of pressure to do everything here, and most of the time this leads to people stretching themselves too thin. I think it's important to realize that "making the most of one's Duke experience" should neither be quantified nor compared across people. Everyone's ideal path will manifest differently. For me, this meant taking time at the beginning to explore what was new and remotely interested me, then choosing what was most important and investing my time into those select few. Of course, there's still a nagging part of myself that persists. It chides me. It says that there's still more to accomplish, that I still have more wasted, unused time. I try to clock it out. I try to convince myself that I've taken full advantage of opportunities offered here in a healthy, sustainable way. But the fact that my denying response is still framed in the mindset of advantages and opportunities means that it has already won.

What I value

At the end of the day, I believe that the motivations for nearly everything I do boils down to two things: building relationships and pursuing knowledge. I think we're here for others and not ourselves. Developing connections is a precedent to an intentional ability to help and support. Although I consider myself introverted, I find few things more grounding that long reflective conversations with people. Besides learning about others, I am also fascinated by almost all topics that people can talk passionately about. Through my role as a peer advisor, I hope to be able to act on these two important values.

Where I see myself after Duke

Not sure!

How I like to spend my free time

I enjoy watching performances put on by student groups to support the work put in by members of our community. Additionally, Duke invites many very qualified professional groups/ speakers on campus, so I try to attend as many of those as I can. Meals for me are the primary method of catching up with people, so catch me at the Nasher cafe most weekends. I also enjoy rock climbing at Wilson and playing my violin in several capacities (lessons, symphony, hoof 'n' horn shows, volunteer caroling).

My favorite classes at Duke

  • AAAS 345: Mass Incarceration/ Citizenship in the US
  • Education as Liberation
  • AAAS 246: Sociology of Racism

Resources I love to use at Duke

  • DAEs
  • Professors
  • FLUNCH
  • Duke Libraries
  • Inter library loan
  • Duke Performances
  • Wellness Center
  • McClendon Tower
  • Campus stores for snacks

Co-curricular/engagement experiences

  • H. Duke Symphony
  • Inside Education
  • DukeEngage
  • Amandla Chorus
  • Taiwanese American Students Association
  • IM Sports
  • CS UTA
  • Duke Splash
  • Citizenship Lab
  • Bass Connections