Job Hunting, The United Incident, and The Girl Who Escaped ISIS

I know, the title of this blog post seems strangely unrelated–and actually, it probably is.  The only common link between job hunting, the controversial United incident of this week and the Girl Who Escaped ISIS is my mental state of being.

So let’s delve right into that:

The United Incident

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you should know about the United incident.  A United flight from Chicago O’Hare to Louisville was overbooked and, despite offering an $800 voucher, no one volunteered to leave the plane and make room for four crew members who needed to staff a connecting flight.  United felt that the only remaining option was to “randomly” select four people to forcibly vacate the plane.

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In Honor of Women’s Day: Women Studying International Relations

Ok, I’m biased about this subject matter (international relations being my main area of focus, and me being a woman), but since entering my graduate international relations program I’ve noticed something quite striking:

Males outnumber females.  By a very large number.

In my Chinese International Relations and Security Class, there are 5 females and perhaps 15 males.  My other classes also hold the same demographic.  I always imagined international relations to be a relatively balance degree of gender (it’s not engineering), but I was alarmed by the contrast.  International Relations (IR) is basically an extension of politics–and there are no women in it.

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What a Trump Presidency Means for US-Japan-China Relations

Two Chinese girls looking out at Tokyo with a faux statue of liberty. The US-China-Japan all in one photo.

It’s only been one day and we are already starting to see the damage.  The repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  The disappearance of the Climate Change page on whitehouse.org.  Re-negotiations of NAFTA.  It’s all really happening.

Yesterday, in a truly humbling event, scores of Women’s Marches were held around the world. Women (and those who support women and diversity) stood in solidarity for equality, love, and women’s rights.  I was rooting for all of you.

Although these marches spanned the globe, they mostly represented a fight for U.S. domestic policies.  Planned Parenthood, immigration, education, healthcare–Americans turned out in record numbers to fight for these rights.

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What I Learned in My 20s… And My Big Announcement

BirthdayinSD

Last Sunday, I turned 30.

I ran away to San Diego for 4 days and enjoyed myself immensely.  Despite all the anxiety I felt on the verge of turning 30, on the actual day of and after… well, I felt the same as when I was 29 (and 28 and 27).

I feel good.

I couldn’t think of a better way to turn 30 than in the company of my boyfriend, my best friend and my beloved coworkers… on the beach.  In San Diego.  In paradise.

marybday4

coronado beach surfing

As I look back on my 20s, here’s some valuable life lessons I learned and lived by:

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America is Not The Greatest Country on Earth

America Needs Some Humble Pie

America Needs Some Humble Pie

I remember in grade school we had to stand up, put our right hand on our heart, salute the flag and say the pledge of allegiance every single day.  We looked up to the flag hanging near the chalkboard as our nation’s anthem echoed from the school’s loudspeaker and chanted the mantra of our great nation.

At school we were not only taught to be proud at the fact we were American, but grateful.  While no one ever distinctly said it to my face, I was educated that America was the best country in the world.

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