Western Michigan meets Korea near Chicago

65950_10100178080437308_5781436_nMark Cooper
Lafayette, IN

In elementary school, my best friend turned to me and said, “Mark, I don’t even think of you as asian anymore!” I knew he meant that our friendship had stepped beyond perceived race, but the phrasing could not be anymore alienating. I have family that trace back to the Mayflower, to the Netherlands, and South Korea…but in the midwest people assume I am Filipino or Mexican. Either way, I love this place I’m at and the pains of looking foreign or different have only become my strengths in character. Chin up youth, opposition builds confidence if you can just rise to meet the fight.


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