By Jan Bhatt (CAS’23)
As an ambassador and peer mentor, the most common question I’ve received is about what KHC co-curriculars are, and what my co-curricular experiences have been like. So I’m going to talk about my favorite co-curriculars today! My freshman year, we were required to attend 3 co-curriculars per semester, which has since been reduced to 2 per semester. My favorite experience was the book reading and lecture with Angie Cruz. She is one of my favorite authors. We read her novel Dominicana in my KHC studio freshman year, and ever since she has become an author that I highly admire and relate to as an immigrant myself. She read excerpts from her novel and talked abundantly about her experiences as an immigrant and as an author, and it was incredible to have the opportunity to ask questions to and directly hear from someone I look up to. She is an inspiration to me and this KHC’s co-curricular event was a dream come true.
The most memorable, impactful and knowledgeable conversation that I have ever had was also during a KHC co-curricular. The co-curricular was about Dawnland, a documentary celebrating the Native American community and highlighting the atrocities committed against them in the past that we also had the opportunity to watch during Studio freshman year. KHC hosted the makers of the documentary and held a Q&A about the film. It was incredibly illuminating, as the talk allowed me to better comprehend the range of perspectives of people from the Native American community, and internalize the fact that I and every non-Native American person in America is on stolen land. I still have a poster that they gave out by the end of the co-curricular hanging on my wall, I have been bringing it with me from home to my dorm room, back and forth ever since the event. It reads “You are on indigenous land.” It challenged my perception of the world by highlighting how successfully the Native American identity has been erased from this country, and helped me to reflect on and reduce my own ignorance and lack of understanding regarding the issue.
Overall, every KHC co-curricular has taught me and exposed me to new interdisciplinary perspectives, and I am so grateful for the learning opportunities that they have presented to me.