//this was a profile I wrote for my writing course//

Ashley Chong is, first and foremost, not Chinese. The people who wrote her father’s name in English botched it, as for Koreans it is commonly Anglicized as ‘Chung’, ‘Jeong’, or ‘Jung’. But, alas. 

She does have some standard Asian features. Monolid eyes and black hair brushing her shoulders. However, she is taller than the usual Korean girl and has skin darkened to a toffee shade from living in South East Asia for nine years. There is no hint of makeup on her face and she dresses in comfortable clothes rather than in a fashionable Asian style. And the contradictions don’t end in her appearance.

She is not in the typical major, either. She started as a biomedical engineer, but she switched to International Studies just last semester and is much happier in said major. For the first time, she found herself visiting office hours because she wanted to learn more. It was an incredible feeling, this sensation of her mind craving after more knowledge with each additional morsel fed to it. It was as if anything was possible through this interdisciplinary approach; nothing could stop her. 

One might also notice that Ashley doesn’t paint her nails and keeps them very short. On closer inspection, the answer to this is found in the calluses on her fingertips from playing the violin. Though it’s not her major, she still participates in a chamber ensemble. She also plays some piano, guitar, and sings. And her feet have wandered the ground of many countries. And her mouth speaks several languages, still wanting to speak more. And her ears crave music, in any genre, in any language, so long as it moves her heart. 

Ashley Chong is not obvious, but then again, no one is.


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