Class of 2021 Profile: Sitting Down with Gavin Xu '21

SUYANG WU ’21
CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Stepping into college, students are eager to become acquainted with each other quickly. The Class of 2021 is a diverse group of both Americans and international students get along with each other well for the first few days. One of my close friends who I want to mention is Gavin. More specifically, I want to mention his insight about his experience so far at Trinity; about initial reactions and perceptions of Trinity are worth talking about, and other first-year students may well relate.
As an incoming international student at Trinity, Gavin seems to be enjoying his first couple of weeks in college. There are two reasons for this: he is a sociable and communicative figure. Whenever he meets any students on campus, he is the one who is always ready to engage in conversation, covering many topics, ranging from world cultures, customs, history, and his favorite, political science, which he plans to major in at Trinity. Everybody loves to share his/her opinions and viewpoints on different topics, which helps him to adapt to the culture of the nation and the college. His outgoing nature helps for adaptation to college life. Friendship is such an essential “instrument” towards socialization and happiness, and Gavin’s approach to the first weeks of college seems to be paying dividends in this regard.
What’s more, his strong engagement with professors is astonishing. Both in-class and around campus, he talks to professors about everything, from lessons learned in class to broader topics of world events. “I really love to communicate with professors on various subjects that are going on all over the world,” he said in an interview. “By engaging with the milieu of knowledge, I am going through a bene cial and rewarding experience. I’m really grateful to be a member of Trinity college, which gives me a great opportunity to talk to many enthusiastic peer students and professors. I’m indeed thankful for encountering nice people here.” His insight gives me a tremendous impression of how someone can be content in new social situations; not just anyone can courageously talk to strangers.
Apart from socialization around campus, Gavin finds Trinity’s geographic locaiton interesting. Trinity College is a small liberal arts college with abundant resources for internships and job opportunities. It’s isolated from other public universities, rendering the college a tranquil, serene place for students to commit to their academic performance. Gavin thinks that it is a great place to foster a future career. He firmly believes that Trinity college is going to be a place where he can explore different perspectives on society and his fields of interest, such as American government and international relations.
Although Gavin’s confidence and ambition is worth examining, the great pressure of the past few weeks can be overwhelming to him. When talking about the challenges and difficulties of studying at Trinity, he says, “Sometimes the books of some courses can be very hard to read since the concepts of particular fields are not familiar to me, a new international student, plus adapting to the new academic environment in America is a hardship to me. However, the more challenging situations I am involved with, the more chances for me to learn the lessons and to obtain much knowledge to overcome any obstacles.” I am astonished by his statements and concerns. Yes, it’s true that we have to challenge ourselves in order to fully discover our short- comings. Gavin provides an example of how first- year students, regard- less of where they come from, can engage meaningfully with Trinity from the very start of their undergraduate years.

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