There is a famous quote from John F. Kennedy “Ask not what your country can do for you -- ask what you can do for your country”. After spending a lot of the day to ask what ACS can do for us, it is the time to think what we can do for ACS. We can’t control what ACS does, but we can control what we can do for ourselves being in ACS.
As international students, we want to be welcomed here. Firstly, we have to prepare ourselves to be ready for the welcome, so at least, we should be open-minded, and not afraid of communicating with domestic students.
As domestic students, we probably haven’t thought about being involved in a welcome program for the international students. But as a chemist, as a scientist, we have drive to learn new things and curiosity to discover new aspects of the world. These new things and new worlds are definitely not just from academic and science area, they are everywhere in your life. The way we approach science will be similar to the way we approach our life. By developing a friendship with somebody from different culture, we can get a better understanding of the world, will know our place better in this world, and will gain some insight how other people view the world. We believe you can get the same excitement by something new about the world as the excitement of discovering something new in your lab (or just getting your reaction to finally work!)
As a member of local ACS section, we can start to think about doing something to change our own life. We can start from inspiring people around to notice more about ACS news or resources, so that what we do in ACS can affect more people. Instead of hoping ACS organize something big, we can start from organizing a small multi-culture roundtable coffee workshop in campus, bridge the culture barriers and help to minimize the challenges that international students are facing. We probably won’t be able to make some big changes, but the small step is a step. Let’s just step by step, and walk into our world friendship and create a developing and sustainable science community around us.