Junior Quincy Yangh, a travel aficionado from Saint Paul, Minnesota, has been excited to attend college since he was young and was excited to choose Gustavus.
“Ever since a young child, my parents impressed upon me the need for higher education. Therefore, I was very critical in selecting an institution that will academically challenge me and help me become the scholar I have always envisioned. I selected Gustavus because I believe it will help me achieve and surpass the goals I have laid out for myself. So far, my education at Gustavus has proved me right,” Yangh said.
Yangh is a geography major and enjoys everything he is involved in on campus, including being a leader for many different student organizations.
“On campus, I have had the honor and privilege of serving as Co-Chair of the Diversity Leadership Council, Co-President of the Hmong American Cultural Outreach, member of the President’s Council for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, Collegiate Fellow, and employee at the Center for Inclusive Excellence,” Yangh said.
Although he is currently abroad this semester, he still is an active member of the President’s Council for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion and plans to be a part of the Indigenous Reconciliation Committee and Building Bridges.
Former Area Coordinator Lindsay Henderson was able to work with Yangh when he was a collegiate fellow.
“[Yangh] is one of the most self-motivated, intelligent, mature and kind students I have met at Gustavus. He often takes on more than his fair share of the work and plans campus-wide programs with ease that are extremely successful. [Yangh]achieves so much more in 24 hours than any normal human being-I am not sure how he manages to fit all of his clubs, student employment, and classes into one day while maintaining high standards at each of these tasks,” Henderson said.
Professors enjoy having Yangh in class and admire the goals he has set for himself.
“I met [Yangh] in the geography department. Particularly, he signed up for my Research Methods course. I had heard of [Yangh] before through other professors who had him in class, but having him the class was a tremendous experience. [Yangh]is full of energy, passion, and creativity. Not only is he fully invested in his education, I love how high [Yangh] is aiming. He really wants the best possible experience and education out of Gustavus,” Associate Professor of Geography Joaquín Villanueva said.
Villanueva has admired how helpful Yangh has been in promoting the geography department.
“Having such an ambassador has been great for geography. I’ve had countless students taking my courses over the past two years that tell me that they are there because [Yangh] recommended geography. Other times, when I tell people across campus that I am in the geography program their first question is: do you know Quincy? I guess, this has become the Quincy program,” Villanueva said.
Echoing this idea was Assistant Visiting Professor of Geography Jesse McClelland.
“I’ve met many students who thought to take their first Geography class, or even major in it, after a conversation with [Yangh]. This owes partly to Geography being a great major and I’m proud to say that! But also it has a lot to do with his wanting to share his passion with others,” McClelland said.
Yangh loves being a Gustie and believes that Gustavus has opened many doors for him to explore.
“My favorite thing about being a Gustie is having access to the resources, opportunities, and mentors I need to achieve my aspirations,” Yangh said.
He enjoys relaxing on campus and supporting the events held.
“My favorite things to do at Gustavus are hammocking in the arb, playing volleyball and badminton with my friends, and attending all the cool events that the Gustavus community puts on,” Yangh said.
Yangh has been given two extremely prestigious scholarships to study abroad.
One is the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship with only about 25 percent of applicants awarded and the other is the Fund for Education Abroad Scholar with 2.3 percent of applicants being awarded.
“Both scholarships share a common goal-to serve first-generation, historically underrepresented, and low-income college students by assisting in making their study abroad endeavors possible. Together, these two scholarships not only made study abroad a reality for me but also provides me with a network of professionals, fellowships, and scholarships that can further support my passion for transnational work in environmental and social justice,” Yangh said.
Yangh has traveled to many different locations around the world with these scholarships.
“For the past two months, I was in Nepal where I studied the geopolitics of the region, Buddhism, the Tibetan language, and Tibetan and Himalayan peoples. I have also been very fortunate to have had the pleasure of conducting fieldwork on Tibetan refugees, and the effects of climate change in the Tsum Valley, a region in the Himalayas,” Yangh said.
Currently, Yangh is interning for an international non-profit in New Delhi called iProbono.
“The mission of iProbono is to secure equal access to justice and opportunity to the most vulnerable and disenfranchised communities…My journey thus far abroad has broadened my perspective on the complexities of our world. Additionally, I have deeply enjoyed the new sceneries, new relationships, and all that I am learning,” Yangh said.
As for after graduation, Yangh has ambitious goals to further his education and continue pursuing his passions.
“After graduation, I hope to further fuel my passion for environmental and social justice on a transnational scale by immersing myself in communities outside the United States. In particular, I hope to become a Fulbright recipient. In addition, I hope to further my education by obtaining a Ph.D. someday,” Yangh said.