What a Time To Be Alive
Hey there! My name is Bryanna and I'm a '23 from Singapore (well, kinda, it's complicated). People have spelled my nickname in various ways, from Bree to Bry, but it looks like it's going to be Brie for these next four years. So...hey readers, I'm Brie! I like funky socks and Birkenstocks, dancing a little too wack for any crowd, listening to hippie alternative music (especially Hanover's own Noah Kahan), discussing how landfills truly stink, eating Cabot cheese, and intensely following the Democratic primary.
I was born in Hong Kong before moving to New York for a few short months, then to Mumbai, India, and finally the little red dot on the end of the Malaysian peninsula called Singapore. My youth was spent bouncing from major city to major city, so how did I end up in a tiny town in northern New Hampshire? There's something about Dartmouth that seemed to encompass all of my idiosyncrasies — to take all the things I've grown up to love and put them in one place.
Hanover is at once both a small town and a base camp to the world. It's both Camp Dartmouth and an Ivy League institution. It's collaborative yet focuses on the development of the individual. Dartmouth students are walking juxtapositions, but here we are, learning in the woods, getting our hands dirty, and preparing to change the world in our own unconventional ways. Like it does for so many of my classmates, Dartmouth pulls together where I come from and where I'm going.
My first year trip surpassed all expectations — and based on what my upperclassmen friends had told me, I expected a lot. Four days were full of flair (Dartmouth speak for funky costumes), Cabot cheese (yes!), and blisters (no!). Never before had I discussed the implications of the democratic power theory with other eighteen year olds while hiking seven miles at three in the morning to watch the sunrise. My trippees (as we Dartmouth students affectionately call members of our first year trip) and trip leaders started one big family that served as an important cornerstone community as I returned and started school.
Right now, I'm taking a class on International Politics, an introductory class on biology, and a class on American history between the Spanish Invasion and the Revolutionary War. Late nights in Baker Berry Library drinking King Arthur Flour chocolate milk (with two shots of espresso) has become the norm. We're living the dream over here.
Coming in as a pseudo-international student has been strange. But from freshman trip to the study sessions to the jumps into the Connecticut river after class, Dartmouth has been so, so good to me. It's been a hell of a couple weeks, and I'm excited to see what lies ahead for this fall term! Check back weekly for updates on the adventures to come.
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The Office of Visa and Immigration Services is certainly the biggest ally of the international student, keeping us from being buried by a snowstorm of visa concerns, cultural clashes and more. But they are not our only allies. Come find out more!