Being from India, my country people they never taught that USA have such a huge problem of racism. Even when I came here I’m shocked by listening people and reading newspaper that how people face racism in each and every corner of Seattle.
.Seattle is one of the growing major city in the united states. As it is growing, its attract the international students to come for their further studies. Hundreds of student walked out of classes at the university of Washington in Seattle campus whether it be an immigrant, a long term student or a visiting short term exchange student. Nationwide, the number of foreign student who came to the University of Washington for International Studies are from 2000-2200 students per year.
Seattle is welcoming town for all the students comes from different races, religious and sexual orientation. We already heard a lot of news that students face racism whenever they immigrant here. So did Racism over? Did people started accepting people as they are? Did all immigrant students face the racism?
To know that I went to the University of Washington on 2 July, 2016. It was a morning time at 10 a.m. I entered in the campus by taking a sip of my coffee, while entered I saw the University of Washington Campus, it was such a huge campus with a lot of immigrant student who came for the studies.
Then I met a girl, her name is Shujing Lyu from China. She immigrant in Seattle 3 years ago on 25 August,2013. She said that “My first day in Seattle is worst it’s not because I face racism but at first day I feel lonely because no one is there with me. At that time, Earlier, I faced challenges because of my weaker English Language and to come out of my comfortable zone I started engaging with people”. She described that “I NEVER FACED RACISM but sometimes my friend faced it. By seeing that I told myself to be best in everything. If people never accept me I accept them, I will be confident to compete with everyone and I will stand by myself. Comparing from my first day till today I didn’t face racism but each and every time I never gave people to judge myself as a stereotype I’m a Human being like everyone”.
After talking with Shujing, I met with a girl name called Ornwipa Thamsuwan from Thailand. She is studying Industrial Engineering Phd. from University of Washington. Her journey started in Seattle on 11 September,2009.
We sat in a Red square and we started our conversation she said that “YES I FACED RACISM. Racism happen and it’s exist.
Racism starts in small things like people started teasing and called me Chinese, even my professor started racist me, he divided us in Asian and white people and always take the opinion and support to white people. Even in my conference, people treat me invisible they don’t know who I’m but I started proving myself with my work. My first day and today is different because now I know how to live life, how to handle the situation and fight with the problems with my work and ability.Yes I’m here from 7 years but racist is not how long you are here it’s just how you look. You face it each and every day and it’s happen, it’s happen in restaurant, grocery store, colleges, schools, etc. But I feel like it is a good experience to be up and down it’s just a challenges that comes in our life and we have to stand up for that to overcome it and YES I FACED RACISM”.
After knowing the story of both students about the racism that racism is still happening and how they handle the problems and overcome with it but there are some people who does not face racism. For finding the conclusion, I went to the “KELLY ETHNIC CULTURE CENTER” it is designed to provide a supportive atmosphere to enhance student academic performance. They help student through offering a safe space where they can come and hang out to avoid the violence that happen would them. To know how they handle student to overcome with racism I talked one of the executive director Marisa .L. Herrera of Kelly ethnic culture center and she cited that “Racism happen, and it’s exist. It’s depend on people that how they digest, treated and face them. We support student by focusing education them on a social justice on providing basis relevant on a dialogue of their experience to talk about what situation they are facing and consulate them. We also taught them the leadership quality and gave them tools to build them to be a stronger leader to find their ways and to rise their voice.
These place welcome both the student who face racism and the person who doesn’t, we encourage them to share their good and bad experience by doing inter group dialogue to know both side of facts and bring things into light to the forefront. Yes this is the place where every students welcome and feel comfortable to live here and share their feelings”. It’s seems like Seattle is accommodating to all the students who came here.
This story was produced by a student in the “Study of the U.S. Institute (SUSI)” program, a collaboration between The Seattle Globalist and FIUTS, supported by the U.S. Department of State. The program brings 20 undergraduates from Sri Lanka, India, Bangladesh and Nepal to Seattle. Participants study journalism and new media, and participate in volunteer and service activities, leadership workshops, and cultural excursions. The story is an example of student work and has not yet been through the Seattle Globalist’s standard editing and fact-checking process.