Humans of East Lansing: Sun Tao
"I live in a co-op house, where the majority of the residents are American students. We have a house meeting every other week, where members bring up and discuss house issues in a democratic way, but it used to be one of the hardest times for me. It felt awkward and helpless when I didn’t know how to be a part of a discussion under a different cultural context. It is fun to listen to people talk, we can learn much from listening. But it felt different if the only thing I felt I could do is to listen during the entire discussion. How could I build trust and have a sense of belonging in this house if I could not even let myself present my opinions and ideas in my own home?
"A more inclusive community requires everyone’s effort. Sometimes, bridging gaps requires us to be vulnerable. We let ourselves experience new things and uncertainty. They can be challenging. The sense of uncertainty, cultural barriers, lack of inclusion and supporting system etc. are some of many challenges international students face at MSU.
"People have capacity to care, love and accept others across differences, as long as we are patient and try. In my house, we have built a strong community together despite our nationalities, races or socioeconomic status. With the foundation of loving and caring, I have felt more comfortable to share and discuss my thoughts with my housemates. I believe we can work together to build a better community."