Dzung Le Dang, Hanoi, Vietnam
My Roots/About Me
I’m from Hanoi, Vietnam. I always try to keep an open mind about people and things that happen around me.
Areas of study
Economics and Business Major, Studio Art Minor
President of Eyes of the World, Mentor for PALS, Events Coordinator for Moonlight Café, Resident Assistant.
Long Term Goal
Travel to lots of places in the world and gain general knowledge and experiences.
Did you have any concerns about fitting in at Cornell?
At first I was nervous about going to college in America, about how I would fit in and how people would perceive who I am. However, after three years here, I have to say that Cornell has such a diverse campus and mostly everyone keeps a really open mind, which makes it easier for individuals to express themselves. I always feel comfortable here, and I know that there will always be my friends and people here that will support me whenever I need it.
What were some of your initial impressions of the campus community?
For me, as an international student thousands of miles from home, it was definitely hard at first. But then the Intercultural Life Office found a host family for me who always welcome me as their daughter and are always there to assist me. ICL organizes everything for International Student Orientation, which lets us know so much about the resources on campus that would probably take us a lot longer to learn about otherwise. I’m just always surprised at ICL (particularly Ken and Heather) for their smiles and hugs and the warmth that I feel whenever I see them. In general, I love it here and I’m thankful for everything that Cornell and ICL have done for me.
How have you grown at Cornell?
I’m taking up leadership roles and I’ve realized that there’s so much more out there if I keep looking for opportunities and get the help I need. I feel like being the President of Eyes of the World is one of the best experiences I’ve had. The position gives me lots of responsibilities, but at the same time gives me so many wonderful chances to learn about being a good leader through meeting with many other leaders on campus. Also, the hard work that other members on Executive Board and I put in, especially for the Culture Show, makes us feel so proud to be Cornell students and to contribute great things to the campus and to make everyone aware of different cultures that are present.
What advice would you give to other international students?
Everything will be hard when you first come to a new environment and are far away from home. However, Cornell can be your second home if you know how to make the best out of it. By that I mean take many chances, challenge yourself, open up your mind and try to look from different perspectives. It’s the chance of a lifetime and you should not hesitate to do and try new things.
I love drawing!