David Wang | Asian Studies
From: Boston, MA
Pomona Days: Class of 2009 | Asian Studies
Current Education: MIT | MBA/MCP (master's in city planning) double
Past Employment: Founder of Bamboo Bicycles Beijing; Research Manager at China Youthology; Director of Student Programming at Massachusetts International Academy (UMass Boston); US Fulbright Scholar
I graduated from Pomona in 2009 with a degree in Asian Studies knowing that I was going to go live in Xi'an, China for a year on a Fulbright. The Fulbright opportunity came directly from my thesis on sports in China. And my thesis came directly from the encouragement I got from my faculty advisors (Dru Gladney and Sam Yamashita) to make ethnographic documentary films in China. The idea to look at the culture of sports through a lens came from a great course at Pitzer on the Sociology of Asian-Americans in Sport, a series of video making classes, and all my Chinese classes that I started taking freshman year. The route looks clear in hindsight, but in actuality I considered majors in creative writing, pre-med, psych, Chinese, IR, and neuroscience and dabbled around quite a bit.
My advice to any Sagehen is (unless you clearly know what you want to do) use the time at Pomona to explore what you enjoy doing. I can't stress this enough. Everything I liked doing ended up be the biggest help to me in my professional life. I enjoyed playing basketball and making videos so I made a video about basketball in China which opened a lot of doors for me by improving my Chinese, teaching me video editing skills, and having a perspective on the commercialism of sports in China. I enjoyed being a sponsor and head sponsor and used those experiences to help me structure a Chinese student residence program for UMass Boston as well as running a lot of company culture trainings from China Youthology. Do what you like, and do it intentionally, and you'll figure something out!