Reconnecting With My Mother Tongue

flag of Tibet
By Sonam Rikha’24 “You’re not Tibetan, you’re American.” If I could get a dollar for every time I’ve heard that phrase uttered to my face, I’d be a millionaire. It’s wild how it's often the people closest to you–relatives, community members, family–who constantly remind you that you don’t belong. I never felt as uncomfortable with my Tibetan-American identity as I did whe...
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My (Not So) Strange Addiction to Social Media

Icons for 9 social media apps
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 Addiction: “a compulsive, chronic, physiological or psychological need for a habit-forming substance, behavior, or activity having harmful physical, psychological, or social effects and typically causing well-defined symptoms (such as anxiety, irritability, tremors, or nausea) upon withdrawal or abstinence” (Merriam Webster Dictionary). If I’m being hon...
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Never Say Never: My Journey Through Math

two math medals
By Sonam Rikha ’24 I will never take a math class again, I promised myself. It was my last day in high school. I proudly exited out of my virtual AP Calculus class and then hurled my calculus notebook into the trash. Despite the deep disgust I’d developed for analyzing functions, I’d miraculously aced my math class and passed the AP test, all while during the pandemic. Only ...
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Embracing My Inner Grandma

Sonam with cream and maroon scarf
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 I feel like I’ve been sprinting these past five years, thinking that if I stop, I’ll trip and fall. Growing up, my parents emphasized two things: “Education comes first” and “Take advantage of every opportunity.” When I started my first year of high school I clung onto these phrases and made sure to fill my schedule with difficult classes and many extracur...
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Voting in Two Presidential Elections During the Pandemic

Sonam holding her Green Book
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 In the months leading up to the US presidential race, my Instagram was flooded with messages telling me to register to vote. Whether it was Cardi B, the kids from Stranger Things, or my fellow classmates, all seemed to want one thing: for me to exercise my civic right and vote. Luckily for me, I was already registered and, by the time October came, ...
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The College Search: Sage(hen) Advice from Sonam

professor explaining something to student on laptop
This is the second in a six-part series of advice for high-school-aged students about the college search process. Enjoy! By Sonam Rikha ‘24 I know that the “C” word can be scary. I remember the immense amount of stress I would experience upon hearing the word “College” when I was in high school. Being the first in my family to go to college and navigate the college applicat...
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What Time Is It? DECISION TIME

singer Lucky Daye with microphone
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 “AHHHHH I GOT IN!” We’ve all heard the screams, we’ve all watched the reaction videos, and some of us have even screamed those same words ourselves. The college application process is tough: which schools should I apply to? Who should I ask to write my letter of recommendation? Can I even afford to go to this school? Though for some, the decision proces...
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Just Do It: Applying for Internships

laptop shows a guide to writing cover letters
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 Clarification: This post is not sponsored by Nike or Shia Labeouf, though if you are a Nike representative looking to collaborate please contact me at… “Just do it!” an overly dramatic and visibly angry Shia Labeouf screamed through my screen. While this phrase was definitely not coined by the outdated celebrity, his uncomfortable “motivational” video h...
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A Disney Encounter

Zoom CDO event with Jennilee Cummings
By Sonam Rikha ‘24 “Hi, my name is Sonam, and you're watching Disney Channel!” I stared in the mirror, reciting the introduction again, but this time drawing out the Disney logo with my hair brush. Who knew that much of 8-year-old Sonam’s childhood would be in the hands of Pomona alum Jennilee Cummings ‘98. When I first saw the email that Pomona’s Career Development O...
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Surrounded by Birds and Procrastination

ducks and geese in water
By Sonam Rikha ’24 With finals looming and the bucket-load of assignments professors are piling onto students, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and find procrastination more and more appealing. As a burnt-out first-year dreading the few days I have left to turn in papers and finish projects, I’ve been finding any random reason to push aside my assignments. Today, I convinced my...
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