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Offline anonymouse

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College is about YOU
« on: October 22, 2014, 11:04:34 PM »
College is really about you.

I'll share my story. And you can share yours too.

For me. It is the age old question that someone always asked and depending on how I feel at the time, My answers range from laughing and walking away or criticizing them for asking it.

But today I'll give my inputs as to what I feel is my true answer.

The question is and always was, "How come you don't hang out with Hmong people?"
Truth be told. I was on campus alot. I was seen with alot of people. However, I was never seen with a group of Hmong people nor was I ever with the Hmong club.
I did try to join the Hmong club but I never felt right. It just didn't click. I was more comfortable with a mixed race of people in a cramped elevator than I was in an open space of Hmong people (something that actually happened).

I thought for quite some time. Why was this?

Well the answer is quite simply. When I stepped onto college, most of my high school friends went different ways. I didn't know anyone in college, people didn't know me, so I got to be whoever I wanted to be. If I wanted to show my gaming side, i could show it off. If i wanted to just be a sports fan, I could easily do that. Never once did I pretend who I was and never once was I assumed to be something. People took me as who I was.

When I tried to hang out with Hmong people. They seem to assume I'm Hmong right from the getgo. Then (if they are from town) they'll ask what part of town I'm from. As soon as I say what part, they'll ask what school and if I know such and such.

And that was the thing. Even though it was just basic questions, they were mapping me out instead of letting me tell them who I was. They were putting an identity on me for me. Which wasn't my thing.

So college really is the place for you. No one is going to know who you are. And you get to decide that. Now there are those that enjoy being in a Hmong club and there isn't anything wrong with the questioning about where your from and whatnot. It's not a huge deal, but I prefer it when someone isn't making assumptions about who I am. It's almost like stereotyping. Let me tell you who I am and accept me for me. :)

College (for the most part) is a diverse place of people from all sorts of backgrounds. I'd say, the full college experience is getting to meet all these people, learn their stories, and engage in activities. It really opens your eyes to new things rather than be stuck to one thing. Instead of being stuck to using news articles, scholar journals, or books, you can use real people and use them as examples.

So yea. College is all about you. Decide who you want to be, or don't decide. Some people are well content with you just saying, Hi my name is Bob, Mary, Sue, Anna, Dawn, etc.


« Last Edit: October 22, 2014, 11:14:51 PM by anonymouse »

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Offline Reporter

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2014, 08:37:17 PM »
Thanks for sharing your answer to that question.

My answer is simple: there wasn't any other Hmong student at the college when I was going there.

But would I have joined a Hmong club or organization if there was one or if there were enough students to form one? Well, that's left to my imagination since reality was never the case that there were enough Hmong to form any organization with me.

So, yes, I, too, did get to be myself.

College is really about you.

I'll share my story. And you can share yours too.

For me. It is the age old question that someone always asked and depending on how I feel at the time, My answers range from laughing and walking away or criticizing them for asking it.

But today I'll give my inputs as to what I feel is my true answer.

The question is and always was, "How come you don't hang out with Hmong people?"
Truth be told. I was on campus alot. I was seen with alot of people. However, I was never seen with a group of Hmong people nor was I ever with the Hmong club.
I did try to join the Hmong club but I never felt right. It just didn't click. I was more comfortable with a mixed race of people in a cramped elevator than I was in an open space of Hmong people (something that actually happened).

I thought for quite some time. Why was this?

Well the answer is quite simply. When I stepped onto college, most of my high school friends went different ways. I didn't know anyone in college, people didn't know me, so I got to be whoever I wanted to be. If I wanted to show my gaming side, i could show it off. If i wanted to just be a sports fan, I could easily do that. Never once did I pretend who I was and never once was I assumed to be something. People took me as who I was.

When I tried to hang out with Hmong people. They seem to assume I'm Hmong right from the getgo. Then (if they are from town) they'll ask what part of town I'm from. As soon as I say what part, they'll ask what school and if I know such and such.

And that was the thing. Even though it was just basic questions, they were mapping me out instead of letting me tell them who I was. They were putting an identity on me for me. Which wasn't my thing.

So college really is the place for you. No one is going to know who you are. And you get to decide that. Now there are those that enjoy being in a Hmong club and there isn't anything wrong with the questioning about where your from and whatnot. It's not a huge deal, but I prefer it when someone isn't making assumptions about who I am. It's almost like stereotyping. Let me tell you who I am and accept me for me. :)

College (for the most part) is a diverse place of people from all sorts of backgrounds. I'd say, the full college experience is getting to meet all these people, learn their stories, and engage in activities. It really opens your eyes to new things rather than be stuck to one thing. Instead of being stuck to using news articles, scholar journals, or books, you can use real people and use them as examples.

So yea. College is all about you. Decide who you want to be, or don't decide. Some people are well content with you just saying, Hi my name is Bob, Mary, Sue, Anna, Dawn, etc.


« Last Edit: October 29, 2014, 08:39:28 PM by Reporter »

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Petal_Rose

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2014, 08:41:43 PM »
Its because they want to associate you to a group (clan) or want to know if you are related to them. That is the Hmong way.



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Offline anonymouse

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2014, 10:20:13 PM »
Thanks for sharing your answer to that question.

My answer is simple: there wasn't any other Hmong student at the college when I was going there.

But would I have joined a Hmong club or organization if there was one or if there were enough students to form one? Well, that's left to my imagination since reality was never the case that there were enough Hmong to form any organization with me.

So, yes, I, too, did get to be myself.

That sounds kind of unpleasant.. Hopefully things changed now? I guess either way I probably still would have enjoyed being with a diverse group more.

Its because they want to associate you to a group (clan) or want to know if you are related to them. That is the Hmong way.

Guess it's just my "american-ness" kicking in. haha.



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Petal_Rose

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #4 on: October 30, 2014, 12:35:30 PM »
That sounds kind of unpleasant.. Hopefully things changed now? I guess either way I probably still would have enjoyed being with a diverse group more.

Guess it's just my "american-ness" kicking in. haha.

Possibly. You have the american mentality. You like to be private. You want to remain anonymouse;)



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Offline Reporter

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2014, 12:37:25 PM »
I did go back to visit the college  years after my graduation. One time there were 22 Hmong students there. They formed a Hmong student organization and many joined except for one Hmong girl who refused to join them.

That sounds kind of unpleasant.. Hopefully things changed now? I guess either way I probably still would have enjoyed being with a diverse group more.

Guess it's just my "american-ness" kicking in. haha.


« Last Edit: December 09, 2014, 07:46:19 AM by Reporter »

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Offline minorcharacter

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2014, 01:17:41 PM »
I'm very sorry to hear about your experience.  I can't help but to notice the tone in which you write your comment and it seems rather unpleasant towards Hmong people.

I grew up in a small town and when I got out of high school I wanted a more diverse experience that my little hometown couldn't offer me.  I wanted to interact with more Hmong people, I love Hmong people, and that's why I come on here daily.  In contrast to what you're saying, when I hang out with Hmong people they don't assume I'm Hmong.  They assume I'm good company and welcome me like they would want to be welcomed.  What's so wrong about assuming that you're Hmong anyhow?  They were right, weren't they?  A majority of the people that were there at your little get together were probably Hmong so I'd say it was a pretty safe and logical deduction.

My experience and choices were very different from yours and it has turned me to whom I am today.  On my first day of college an older Hmong student approached me and introduced himself.  It was through him that I got involved with the Hmong student organization and met a lot of new friends.  He was very polite about it and has long since instilled values of being courteous, polite, and welcoming to other Hmong people I meet along my journey.

I did not participate with the Hmong student association a lot but I did meet a lot of my Hmong friends through volunteering and some of those guys are the best friends I have ever made.  They're diverse, opinionated, and they can tell a good joke.  It just so happens to be a plus that we're all Hmong and share such a similar background, but we don't rub that in anyone else's face.

I could go on and annotate about how I have a lot of non-Hmong friends, how people ask me why I do not hang out with Hmong people, why I am not into the things other Hmong men are, or why I do not have a Hmong accent when I speak English, but I don't enjoy blustering about how non-Hmong I can be.  You see, I have found friends that are both Hmong and non-Hmong that accept me for who I am and freely discarded those that are less than pleasant to be around.  With that said, as an antithesis to your opening comment, college is NOT about you.  It is about the people you meet along the way, the experiences you undertake, and the things you do.  Pure semantics.   O0



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Offline anonymouse

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2014, 08:01:02 PM »
I'm very sorry to hear about your experience.  I can't help but to notice the tone in which you write your comment and it seems rather unpleasant towards Hmong people.

I grew up in a small town and when I got out of high school I wanted a more diverse experience that my little hometown couldn't offer me.  I wanted to interact with more Hmong people, I love Hmong people, and that's why I come on here daily.  In contrast to what you're saying, when I hang out with Hmong people they don't assume I'm Hmong.  They assume I'm good company and welcome me like they would want to be welcomed.  What's so wrong about assuming that you're Hmong anyhow?  They were right, weren't they?  A majority of the people that were there at your little get together were probably Hmong so I'd say it was a pretty safe and logical deduction.

My experience and choices were very different from yours and it has turned me to whom I am today.  On my first day of college an older Hmong student approached me and introduced himself.  It was through him that I got involved with the Hmong student organization and met a lot of new friends.  He was very polite about it and has long since instilled values of being courteous, polite, and welcoming to other Hmong people I meet along my journey.

I did not participate with the Hmong student association a lot but I did meet a lot of my Hmong friends through volunteering and some of those guys are the best friends I have ever made.  They're diverse, opinionated, and they can tell a good joke.  It just so happens to be a plus that we're all Hmong and share such a similar background, but we don't rub that in anyone else's face.

I could go on and annotate about how I have a lot of non-Hmong friends, how people ask me why I do not hang out with Hmong people, why I am not into the things other Hmong men are, or why I do not have a Hmong accent when I speak English, but I don't enjoy blustering about how non-Hmong I can be.  You see, I have found friends that are both Hmong and non-Hmong that accept me for who I am and freely discarded those that are less than pleasant to be around.  With that said, as an antithesis to your opening comment, college is NOT about you.  It is about the people you meet along the way, the experiences you undertake, and the things you do.  Pure semantics.   O0

No no it's ok. It was huge learning process. It taught me to be who I am. I'm Me.
Don't take it that way. I'm not unpleasant towards Hmong people (would make no sense why i'm on PH lol).
If you think about it, its a really inconsiderate question. It's like walking up to a girl and saying "Hey you're hmong, how come you don't date Hmong guys?" It's inconsiderate and rude. Of course I could have easily snapped. The laughing and walking away is rude, but it's technically better than insulting them for their simple mindedness.

So I'm not denying that I sound insulting.  Back then, When someone asks me something inconsiderate and people keep doing it, of course, depending on how I'm feeling that day it could very well be "the straw that broke the camel's back."  But most of the time, I try to be calm and make light of the situation. If I can't hold myself, then I'll walk away. Now, things are different, I can control myself a whole lot better.

I do have Hmong people I hang out with alot. And they aren't like the ones I've ran into in college. They never said, "Hey you're Hmong aren't you?" We just hang out and talk. When we first met, we introduced ourselves, no one said, hey are you related to so and so, did you date so and so, are you from south or north? that kind of thing. They just let it go.

Now to answer your question about what's wrong with assuming that I am Hmong. The problem is that they assume. When you assume, you make an ass out of you and me (U M E).  Here's the thing.  I'm right there, I'm right in front of you, ask me if you want to know about my heritage. Ask me if you want to know what my ethnicity, ask me if you want to know about my race. Ask me if you want to know about me. It's not hard to just go "So what's your ethnicity?" There is no need to go, "Hey you're Hmong aren't you?" It chronicles a close friend in high school. He's chinese, but his last name is Ngo. People would often ask him, are you vietnamese? or "Is your last name pronounced like the vietnamese name Ngoc (silent G)?"
You see where I'm getting at? If it's ok for someone to say "hey you're Hmong aren't you?" that would mean that it's ok for someone to say "Hey aren't you chinese?" and it's rude to do that.
It doesn't matter if you are right or wrong. I'm right there. ask me, you don't need to make an assumption.
- Throughout life. Alot of Hmong people I know who grew up in diverse neighborhoods were often confused as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese, Mongolians, and so on. And it was insulting and often seen as a racist remark when someone assumed they were something. Whether they were right or wrong, its insensitive to the person. It doesn't all of a sudden make it ok when you are right. it's still insensitive.

It may have been a safe and logical deduction. However, it comes down to assumption again. It's like lumping all asians in one room as Chinese even though everyone is possibly not Chinese or possibly even the same Chinese, they could very well be different in terms of culture, language, and so on. So it's wrong to lump people together.  I do not try to lump Hmong people together as I don't think all Hmong people are like this. It does sound like I did. But I do have Hmong friends, if I did think this way, I would not have Hmong friends. My Hmong friends aren't friends because they are Hmong. they are friends who happens to be Hmong.

So yes. There are great Hmong people in the world. And there are wonderful Hmong people in the world. Now I'm not someone who can't take a joke. It's just, when you open up a conversation with a stranger with an assumption without having any regards to what their past may have been, it can lead to very negative things.  Now I could have tried to educate them, I could have explained it to them like I'm doing here, but I wasn't in the right state of mind to do so. It took me years to finally see light and grow from the situation.

I'm not trying to show how non-hmong I am. It's much more than that. It's about how I perceive the world, and how I try my best to be a better person to the world. No assumptions, no irrational thoughts,  I let people tell me who they are. I let them tell me their story. I listen, I don't assume. I teach my nieces and nephews to do the same. Never assume if you can just ask.

btw. you said," It is about the people you meet along the way, the experiences you undertake, and the things you do. " Thus it's still about you. haha. ^_^ different meanings, but we come down to almost the same thing.

- So you might be wondering where this had led me and how I have grown from the situation?
I've actually been quite vocal about it. I've given a total of 5 speeches where I used this as an example (not details, but the whole assumption thing)
1 was a 15 minute speech.
2 were 1 hour speeches. 45 min of the actual speech , 15 min Q&A. (1 was at a multicultural conference, 1 was at a staff retreat)
1 was a 30 min speech to high schoolers.

To sum up . I start off with the question.
What is your Personal Identity?
And after all the slides the conclusion is. You are you. You define you. You can define yourself as Hmong,Mong-American, American, Black, African American, White, Caucasian, European, Anglo-American, Anglo-Saxan,. You can define yourself as a Mother, a Father, A Son, A Daughter, An Aunt. You can define yourself as a firefighter, a teacher, a gamer, a sportsfan, a student, a heterosexual, a homosexual, a transexual, an asexual, an intergender. You can define yourself as a hero, santa claus, a homosapien, a human, an ape, The list goes on and on. Whatever you want to identify yourself as. That is who you are, that is what you are. It's your decision. It's your choice. It is your Personal Identity.




I did go back to visit the college  years after my graduation. One time there were 22 Hmong students there. They formed a Hmong student organization and many joined except for one Hmong girl who refused to join them.

That's awesome the solo life made you strong. I applaud you for it. :)

Possibly. You have the american mentality. You like to be private. You want to remain anonymouse;)


Haha. You are the first person to ever say that using my username. it's actually a portmanteau of enjoying being just me (the anonymous aspect) and my nickname growing up, Mouse (cause of my height XD). I just like to be me :). I like to embrace the idea that you are you are, no one can tell you who you are, you decide who you are. If people truly are respectful, they would ask you, not assume. Assumption is more than likely to lead to unwanted drama.


« Last Edit: December 09, 2014, 07:51:47 AM by Reporter »

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Petal_Rose

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2014, 12:11:56 PM »
Anonymouse, I have a challenge for you. LOL



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Offline minorcharacter

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #9 on: November 04, 2014, 01:02:13 PM »
Fair enough.  O0



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Offline anonymouse

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2014, 12:17:32 AM »
Anonymouse, I have a challenge for you. LOL

And what is this challenge? Share with me the details.

Challenges excite me as long as they are reachable. ^_^


« Last Edit: November 06, 2014, 12:20:41 AM by anonymouse »

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Petal_Rose

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2014, 07:57:22 AM »
And what is this challenge? Share with me the details.

Challenges excite me as long as they are reachable. ^_^

Let me think about it and I'll let you know.  ;)



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Offline anonymouse

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2014, 04:24:21 PM »
Let me think about it and I'll let you know.  ;)

OK :D



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Offline tRouBLe

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2014, 08:53:25 PM »
College is really about you.

I think you could say that about a lot of experiences people go through....... ......even life.



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Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are. ~ John Wooden

Offline anonymouse

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Re: College is about YOU
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2014, 12:51:12 AM »
I think you could say that about a lot of experiences people go through....... ......even life.

Yea I guess you can say that about life in general.

But for most of us, College is our first step into the "real world."
After 18 years of living under a roof, and other people holding our hands along the way.

Here we are. In college/The real world. Nobody knows who we are, Nobody knows our story. Nobody knows our origin.
You can be whoever you want. You don't have to be tied down to simple ethnicities anymore. You can be whoever you want to be.

No one is going to know. No one is going to find out. You can turn a small idea like a lie into a truth. You can become that person you always wanted to be.
The lie can become real and you can finally be someone else. :) No one can stop you because they don't know you.

So yea. this does apply to non-college folks too. It's the "real world" you can just be yourself now. The real world where the real you is to be discovered. :D



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