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Helena Zhang

Why learn?

Last quarter, I was in a class that took my head, turned it upside down and shook it until the beliefs that I’d constructed thus far collapsed and fell out. Although the class left me slightly disoriented, I am now able to start at square one and do my best to make the most out…

Belonging as an Asian American

“You’re a banana.” “Wait, what?” “Yeah, you’re yellow on the outside, white on the inside … It’s a compliment,” my friend clarifies during our side conversation in class. “If it’s a compliment, then why did it leave me with such a heart-sinking aftertaste?” I wondered as I pushed laughter through the lump in my throat…

Missing different walks of life

I miss meeting people from all walks of life. Although Stanford’s student body is composed of people from all across the country and around the world with unique backgrounds, passions and dreams, in certain ways everyone is very similar. We’re all on a path directed by higher education. The different worlds we come from all…

Little fish, ginormous pond

When I was applying to college, I was repeatedly asked the questions: Would you rather be mediocre in greatness or excel in mediocracy? Would you rather be a small fish in a big pond or a big fish in a small pond? I was told that my answer would determine where I will thrive. I…

The paradox of choice at Stanford

Let us go then, you and I, When the evening is spread out against the sky Like a patient etherized upon a table. … In a minute there is time For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse. … So how should I presume? For the past three weeks I felt like Prufrock from…
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