We sat down with Genesys Works Twin Cities 2018 alumnus and former Target intern Zoua Khang to see what she’s up been up to and what advice she has to give current students and other alumni.
Q: Tell us about your college journey.
ZK: My college journey started in September 2018. I came into Augsburg University as a first-year and as a commuter. I was nervous because I knew no one at Augsburg University. The first thing I did was apply to be in the Emerging Leader Program (ELP), which has taught me how to be a better leader. The program goes over different topics such as the use of language and how different cultures interact with each other. With the ELP organization, I was able to meet amazing leaders, connect with students and help the community with volunteering work. The second thing I did was join another organization called Pan-Asian Students Service (PASS) where I got to meet more first-years and get to know my mentor. My mentor helped me a lot with getting me out of my comfort zone. For example, she introduced me to many of her friends, and we got to connect. Through her, I also got to connect with a lot of students and residents living on campus.
Q: What was the biggest challenge in your transition to college?
ZK: The biggest challenge was navigating the resources on campus and using those resources to my advantage. Augsburg University has a lot of resources, such as Handshake, which is provided for students who are looking for jobs or internships on or near campus. There are so many other resources, including as the Strommen Center, the writing lab, your academic advisor, and more. To learn how to use these resources, I constantly reach out. I reach out for help to ask for advice from my academic advisor and to the Strommen Center to get help with my resume. I also constantly check my emails for opportunities from Handshake so that I can take advantage of these.
Q: What led you to becoming a Resident Assistant (RA), and what has been your favorite part of the experience?
ZK: One thing that led me to become an RA was that I was looking for an opportunity to become a better leader, and this RA role was that opportunity. It pulled me out of my comfort zone and forced me to connect with residents. Not only did it force me to get out, it also helped me with one of my personal goals. My favorite part of the experience is helping to organize events. Being a part of Resident Life, it is our job to entertain residents with fun events each week. For one event, we took the residents out into the city and explored places. More recently, I organized an event where we went to the Weisman Art Museum. I personally enjoy organizing because it allows me to throw out creative ideas and put them to the test. I value the feedback from the students who attend and the connections I build by collaborating with our team.
Q: What is your advice for how college students can get involved on their campus and in the community?
ZK: My advice for how college students can get involved on campus is simple: read your emails! Learn to use your college email to your advantage and show up. Even if the event doesn’t seem appealing, you might learn a thing or two and break through your comfort levels. Join clubs and learn.