The Observer

Cai: Personalize your study experience

Yingying Cai, Columnist

March 30, 2018

When I was talking to a fourth-year student this semester, I learned that her friend was just four credits short for graduation, which really put him in a difficult situation. The best solution that instantly popped into my mind was doing an independent study. Not only because that was a practical way...

Cai: Be a friend, not a savior

This artwork from a homeless man whose house burnt down reminds us that despite our differences, we can all enjoy art.

Yingying Cai, Columnist

February 23, 2018

I still remember when I first visited the Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry's Men's Shelter. The coordinator of volunteers warned me over and over again not to come alone or by public transportation. “Are you sure you are okay working with them, even if they have mental problems, use drugs or have...

Cai: Has colonialism become a culture?

Yingying Cai, Columnist

February 9, 2018

When I came back from the study abroad program in India, a heated debate took place during my group’s post-trip meeting. Some of us brought up that when we were visiting an orphanage, a little girl was holding a Barbie with gold hair, blue eyes and fair skin. It turns out that all of her dolls look...

Cai: Make incredible memories by studying abroad

Yingying Cai, Columnist

January 26, 2018

Riding an elephant, visiting the world’s first toilet museum and joining a singing battle with local kids: These are only some of the incredible experiences you can get from studying abroad. This winter break, I took a short-term study abroad class in India with the Mandel School of Applied So...

Cai: Noticing flaws in our own homeland

Yingying Cai, Columnist

December 8, 2017

In my anthropology class, we used the caste system in India as an example of social stratification. The caste system divided Hindus into a hierarchy consisting of four main categories. It was a closed system, meaning a system with a minimal level of social mobility. Castes were inherited and not interchangeable;...

Cai: Live in the moment

Yingying Cai, Columnist

November 17, 2017

When I was applying to colleges, I never understood why “campus environment” was an item for evaluation on almost every college rating website. We go to school to study, not to sightsee, I thought. I held that thought until this autumn, when a shower of golden leaves poured over my head and wa...

Cai: Burst out of the bubble

An organizer directs residents at the Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry Homeless Shelter. Case Western Reserve University students should look outside of campus for opportunities to serve the community.

Yingying Cai, Columnist

October 27, 2017

“Case is a bubble.” This is something I have repeatedly heard since the first day of school. On campus tours, during orientation, in class…people usually say this to reassure one another that no matter how miserable outsiders think Cleveland is, Case Western Reserve University has nothing to do wi...

Cai: Post-DACA: These are real people

Yingying Cai, Columnist

October 6, 2017

A month has passed since the Trump administration announced the repeal of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) on Sept. 5. Five more months remain for the Congress to discuss its implementation. On the day of the announcement, every student, faculty member and staff member of Case Western Reserve...

Cai: A lesson from my roommate’s religion

Yingying Cai, Columnist

September 22, 2017

Six a.m. Sunday, I woke up for some reason. “Morning, roomie,” said my roommate, standing before her mirror, all tidy and dressed up. It was more refreshing than coffee to see my roommate, who usually wears Case Western Reserve University sweatshirts and flip-flops, in an ironed blouse and flats. ...

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