I was never meant to be here (but privileged enough to be)

Sunrise shot at the university I’m privileged enough to attend, HKUST

I’m female. I’m part of a racial and religious minority. I survived a riot that targeted specifically the people of my skin colour.

And yet this girl managed to snag a place at one of the best business programs in a top university in Asia’s world city? Whattt? Such a baffling thought.

I was reading this article earlier from The New York Times about how marriage is now symbolic to those coming from a socioeconomic privilege. The words “college graduate” echoed several times throughout the passage, and it’s times like this where I realize how privileged I am.

In all honesty, more often than not I feel like the odds are against me: I’m competing with smarter, more talented people in the job market. I do not speak the world’s most-spoken language. I have a green passport that puts me through “random inspections”.

But I have also been blessed with so many privileges along the way that got me here. If the university hadn’t offered me a scholarship, I wouldn’t have come. If my family didn’t manage to flee to an English-speaking country, I wouldn’t have grown up learning it as my first language. If my parents did not have the grit that they have to go through every single day, I could have easily dropped out of school. If my family believed that education wasn’t for women, I wouldn’t be educated at all.

Moments like this make me think that if I have managed to make my way here thanks to all the privileges I’ve had along the way while defying all odds, it means that the universe has somehow conspired to place me here. But for what cause? For what purpose? Am I supposed to make an impact to the world? To my community? What impact can I make? What can I do? Do I even want to make an impact? What’s a cause that would get me moving?

Guess part of my mission here is to figure this out.