Melanie (Danmei) Xu

Hey future mentees and friends! Welcome to Carleton! I’m Melanie (Danmei) Xu, your very excited OIIL Peer Leader. I’m a sophomore from Anshan, China and currently living in Hangzhou, China. I am planning on majoring in Sociology and Anthropology and possibly concentrating in Women’s and Gender Studies and African/African American Studies. Woot, that’s a long list. We’ll see where it leads me to. I am really passionate about social justice work, research and sex education. Music and literature are my cures, and I absolutely love having conversations about them. I am also active in a number of organizations on campus including QTPOC(Queer, Questioning Trans People of Color), CWI(Collective of Women’s Issues), CORAL(Carleton's Organized Radicals and Leftists). Carleton has extended so many aspects of my life and I hope you will feel this way too. Oh did I mention that I am going to be a resident of Stimson House (the Intercultural Center)? Come by and say hi anytime!

1. What excited you about being at Carleton?

Definitely all great resources that Carleton offers. I feel like no matter what identity one carries, international student, domestic student of color, first-generation college student, queer or anything, they can always find people here who’re happy to listen, have great conversations with, and offer help when needed. Indeed, it has been a great experience for me. In particular, OIIL and the GSC (Gender and Sexuality Center) have been essential parts of my life at Carleton. I met my mentors, my close friends and some of my favorite staff members in these offices. I also enjoyed being part of the different programs these offices offered last year such as Vagina Monologues, Speak Up!, Rainbow retreat, People of Color retreat and many more.

2. What is something you wish you had been better prepared for before arriving to Carleton?

I wish I knew the variety of people I was going to meet. In high school, I definitely had the tendency to put people into boxes and make biased assumptions about them. At Carleton I am constantly surprised by diverse backgrounds and personalities of people. I am so grateful that Carleton taught me the mindset of not knowing what to expect.