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My name is Bin Xie and I am a graduating fourth-year Commerce student concentrating in Finance and Accounting, with a double major in Economics and a minor in mathematics. I came to the United States in fifth grade from China and now live in northern Virginia.
One of my favorite stories about growing up in the U.S. was the first day of school. I did not know a word of English at the time except “hello”, “bye”, and “my name is Bin”. So when I had to ask my teacher permission to go use the restroom, the task seemed almost impossible. Unable to talk, I dashed to the chalkboard and drew a picture of a toilet. That was how I learned the word, “bathroom”. It was one of the most useful words I’ve learned in any language.
The spirit embodied in the story you have just read is alive and plentiful at U.Va. People are entrepreneurial here. Everything from student self-governance to the various organizations and initiatives on Grounds shows just how much my fellow Hoos power U.Va. with their thoughts and actions. After coming to U.Va., I became involved in various councils, including the Student Council, the College Council, the Echols Council , and the Global Student Council. As a member of Echols Outreach Committee, I initiated the revamping of the decade-old Echols brochure for the class of 2013. I also started the Rotunda Sing for Echols Day on the Lawn and ran it for two years.
Coming from a foreign country, I understood what it was like to study in a new country and wanted to serve the international community at U.Va. I joined the Global Student Council shortly after its founding. I ran a team of more than a hundred student volunteers to be the first students to officially congratulate newly admitted international students. I oversaw many projects, ranging from the annual International Dessert Festival attended by hundreds of students, to translating the Parent Handbook for parents of the international students. I am currently working closely with the Office of Development and the International Studies Office on an initiative to bring financial aid to international students. I believe that U.Va. is top-caliber university that deserves the best students around the world, and that its status as the Public Ivy should not be a financial deterrent to the admitted international students. GSC expects to set up the scholarship fund within 2012-2013. I am also passionate about mentoring, and I am currently co-chairing the McIntire International Mentoring Program. I have set up a classroom participation workshop for my mentees with a communications professor, as well as conducted mock interviews and resume reviews for my mentees’ internship search.
I am also an avid music-lover. I play four different kinds of flutes, sing, improvise, record my own covers, and perform in the Charlottesville community. I am also the proud winner of the “Most Emotional Singer” award at the 2011 U.Va. CSSS Karaoke Competition.
I have enjoyed doing all of that, knowing I have left a positive mark at U.Va. I plan to work in New York for a major investment bank after graduation. I also plan to volunteer at local schools or get involved in a mentoring program in my spare time. In the extreme long term, I would like to open my own bakery and tea/coffeehouse.
Aside from being an Echols Scholar, I am also the 2011 recipient of the David W. Thompson Scholarship for Excellence in Accounting.