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Canwen Xu    

Teach For America Corps Member & Advocate of Asian-American Issues

Growing up in the US in predominantly white communities, Canwen Xu struggled to reconcile her American and her Chinese identities. She explains the unique ways that racial bias affects Asian Americans — and shares how she has learned to embrace all of the different parts of her background.

Canwen Xu's slogan for life is “Canwen can win.” Born in Nanjing, China, she moved to the United States when she was two years old, and since then has lived in some of the whitest states in the country, including North Dakota, South Dakota and Idaho. As a senior at Timberline High School, Xu was the national membership director and Idaho state director for the Young Democrats High School Caucus. Also a programmer, she started an all-girls computer science workshop called Code For Fun and received National Runner-Up in the 2014 NCWIT Aspirations in Computing competition. In her free time, Xu enjoys breaking stereotypes, reaffirming stereotypes, and driving competently on her way to buy rice.

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