Reality Check

I had a great, long conversation on SKYPE (yeah, I know, I probably sent you double/triple e-mails on that……I’ve been getting confused e-mails all day from the older set in my contacts list….including the nearly 100-year-old nun I worked w/ in Boston) today with N.S., who I’ve long been wanting to chat with. We just never got around to hanging out much when I was in Seoul last year.
Anyway, we were discussing the parameters of my internship this summer with G.O.A.’L. We talked about a vast array of stuff over the course of 2 hours. Mostly having to do with the global, Korean adoptee community. We see eye-to-eye on a lot of the issues facing our community, and it’s interesting because while we have a lot of mutual friends, I think we both can offer each other a fresh perspective on what we’ve each hashed out before.

Plus, I got a nice reminder of why I went back to grad school in the first place.


So, I’m very excited to work in Korea this summer with an adoptee NGO (non-governmental organization, fyi). I’m going to be working with them on not only their programming (birth family searches, website info, etc.), but I also get to help them plan their August conference (w/ needs-assessment and evaluation, too) as well as help with their strategic planning for the organization. Through our chat, I realized just how much I really have learned over the past few months, and even how my “necessary evil” classes (#s 1 & 2 below) this quarter will help me in the future.

Here are the classes that I’m taking this quarter (been wanting to post this for weeks):
1. Budgeting/Financial Management (a.k.a. “accounting”)
2. Quantitative Analysis I (a.k.a. “statistics”)
3. Management of Nonprofit Organizations
4. Korean
5. Skills workshop: Managing and Nurturing Effective Volunteer Boards, Commissions, and Advisory Committees

Don’t you love it how my school tries to make our stats and accounting classes sound sexier?

And what else, pray tell, am I doing this quarter?
1. Working 20 hours/week at the UW Office of Undergraduate Admissions. Evaluating applications for the incoming 2006 freshman class. The school receives around 16,000 apps, they accept 2/3 of those, and they end up with about 5,000 freshman. So, we have about 20 grad school students (myself included) helping the Admissions staff read all of these personal statements about their life-changing mission trips to {insert “developing” country here} and how the people there are “poor, but happy.”
2. Continuing my position on ESO (Evans Student Organization). We’re planning an Auction/Talent Show fundraiser for February. And we’re having meetings every other Wed. at 7:30 a.m. WTF????
3. I’m offially a board member now for AAAW (Asian Adult Adoptees of Washington). And we’re hosting the next Korean adoptee mini-gathering here in Seattle!! May 18-21, mark it down on your calendars now. Get on Orbitz. We’ve been calling various places, trying to book a hotel, restaurants, etc. Also, we’re trying to step up our programming for the year, so there are more events, etc.
4. Cardio kick-boxing class with fellow Evans-ers. Only it’s at 8:15 a.m., Tues/Thurs. Why am I doing this to myself? I have fond memories of Bo & Kevin from the L Street Gym in S.B. Oh, you know what I’m talking about, K. & S. (Although I don’t think S. reads this, but whatever.) I was so sore last week–it made me feel even older than being surrounded by perky, 19-year-old sorority girls in the class.

I’m also volunteering for the Northwest Asian American Film Festival next weekend. Should be good times.

Needless to say, I’ve been feeling over-extended. And I need to get a light therapy lamp soon to combat the unforgiving, steel-gray skies in Seattle.

But despite being behind and feeling cranky for most of the day, I’m currently in a zen mood. Perhaps because I splurged tonight on iTunes (Talib Kweli, Matisyahu, Typical Cats, IQU [yeah, K., I’m indulging my “indie hip-hop” predilection–perhaps even more pretentious than what I so derisively termed “hipster” music??], and a few singles from Mariah Carey, Kelly Clarkson, and Mary J. Blige. Gotta have some balance. I’ve been wanting “Since U Been Gone” for weeks.).

[P.S. I got lots of kudos for the M* post. I’m reluctant to keep blogging about it, because I don’t want that to become the focus. But, there is a funny, developing story. Still in process. Involves Bachelors #4 and #5, separately.]



Filed under Updates

2 responses to “Reality Check

  1. Wow, your GOA’L internship sounds really exciting! To have a hands-on role in helping shape the organization and, consequently, adoptees’ experiences in Korea. I wish opportunities like that had been around while I was a student. Very cool.

    * Sending you some Hawaii sunlight *

  2. 1. Your post makes my toes curl with anticipation (anxiety) about my pending acceptance into the Ayala Foundation Summer Fellowship to which I have applied. Go Asian NGO power, go.
    2. My school doesn’t go for sexier course titles–just more pretentious. (I signed up for ‘China Is All That Matters’ thinking it would be ‘Korean History & Civilization’.)

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