Hello! I'm Jonathan Lin, a rising senior English major currently living in Hong Kong. I am of Chinese descent with no siblings, some pet goldfish, and a fondness for tech and gadgets. Born in Minnesota, I lived in the States until age seven, before moving to Hong Kong and attending an international school. I love books and movies, especially the art house film scene.
I play the piano, guitar, and a little drums, and love loud as well as ambient music. Certain video games also make me weak at the knees. I'm quite a fan of the outdoors, whether it is for a quick jog, to hiking and backpacking trips. Mostly I really like spending time with people, where I can learn so much about others, and in turn, about myself.
I’ve recently become much more aware of world affairs that I had previously not thought to pay attention to, and spend time updating myself on foreign policy and the global sphere. This summer break I will be in Monterey, California for an internship that focuses on nuclear nonproliferation policy, and am looking forward to sampling that industry of international affairs.
Although it's a far cry from the bustling city that I call home, Carleton has a great variety of things happening on campus throughout the week. Music concerts, theater productions, and movie screenings are just some of events that make campus life so vivid. I find the small student body to provide a comfortable environment to get to know many people - one that would otherwise not be present at other larger universities.
What are the academics at Carleton?
Academics is serious business at Carleton, but the great thing is that the climate is not the cut-throat, dog-eat-dog dynamic of other very competitive educational institutions. Here it is generally accepted that students do not openly inquire about grades on assignments or classes at the end of school terms, making the academic experience rigorous and challenging but at the same time genuinely eye-opening for each individual student, because he or she is encouraged to improve based on themselves as opposed to other people. In addition, Carleton's small size
allows for a great interaction between students and professors: it is definitely a loss if one does not properly take advantage of this close connection. I would strongly encourage incoming students to actively seek time to discuss ideas and review concepts with professors during designated "office hours," which are time slots each professor purposefully holds for students to drop in and chat.
How does one manage time at Carleton?
With the issue of academic rigor comes the challenge of time-management. As a Carl, you really learn the value of each and every hour of the day. Although you typically only take 18 credits worth of classes per trimester, and thus at a glance seems like a far lighter load in terms of class time than high school, the expectations and demands are much higher. Use of any personal planning / calendar device is highly recommended, especially towards the latter half of each trimester when finals and the deadlines for term-long projects approach. There are many helpful student resources on campus that provide guidance for assignments, from writing papers to mathematical problem-solving: again I would strongly encourage incoming students to take advantage of these too, especially when you need academic help. I definitely understand the tendency to want to individually deal with homework assignments without external help, but at Carleton seeking assistance is sometimes much more productive than sitting there on your own constantly eyeing a particular difficulty or challenge.