A place without walls

Alien on Campus

But as the semester continued, I noticed that even though the campus doesn’t have any walls, people’s minds are filled with barriers.
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2 homes are better than 1

Alien on Campus

But my long-term relationship with Berkeley was very questionable. As a consequence, I felt my sense of “home” becoming increasingly ambiguous. Home is where the heart is, right? But what if my heart falls in love with a place that was never meant to be permanent for me?
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Breaking through the Berkeley bubble

Alien on Campus

When I lived in Monterrey, I had been surrounded by people with the same beliefs and the same culture. Now I was coming to a new country — specifically the liberal state of California — and I thought that a diverse community would automatically mean that everyone had an open mind.
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Kiss and greet

Alien on Campus

During my first few days of college, greeting others with a stiff handshake instead of a friendly kiss was very weird for me.
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An accent by any other name

Alien on Campus

The “American accent” is used as the optimal standard of speech. It is equated to a higher IQ, to a less threatening immigrant, to a more approachable international student.
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Making a name for myself

Alien on Campus

That afternoon, my friends and I came up with Andra, which both originated from my first name and would sound less foreign in the United States. And just like that, I was baptized.
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