Facilitator Corner: Yiru Xupan
FIUTS Facilitators are student leaders from all over the world who welcome new international visitors, help organize events, and lead activities for hundreds of students each quarter. Read on to find out more about the FIUTS facilitator experience from Yiru Xupan.
Name: Yiru Xu-Pan
Major: International Studies
Class: Recent master’s graduate
FIUTS Facilitator Since: October 2016
Hi all, I’m Yiru from Zhejiang, China. I was born and raised in a small, green, and mountainous town. I went to Beijing for my undergraduate studies and spent half a year studying abroad at Columbia University. The days when I wandered around New York City made me fall into love with the culture and people and decide to pursue a graduate degree in Cultural Studies in the States. I was lucky to find my place at UW and became involved with FIUTS.
What does it mean to be a FIUTS facilitator?
Greatly fascinated by diverse cultures, I did not hesitate to take up the role of facilitator shortly after I arrived at UW and learned about FIUTS. The more events I facilitate, the better I appreciate what being a facilitator offers. From making announcements in front of people, initiating conversations and discussions, collaborating with fellow facilitators, to coming up with icebreakers and straightening out emergencies, I stepped out of my comfort zone and overcame my shyness, formed deep relations with other facilitators, familiarized myself with practical people skills, and most importantly, learned from amazing stories from event participants and FIUTS family. So for me, being a FIUTS facilitator is a life-changing as well as life-rewarding experience.
Favorite FIUTS anecdote as a facilitator
In retrospect, every moment I spent with FIUTS is like gems of the ocean, glittering in its own glory. My most recent favorite memory took place when I facilitated the two-day camp in the Orientation Week. I remember I met a German girl there. She was coy and quiet, seeming to be reluctant to join us for the square dancing that night. But I invited her to be my partner and danced with her for the first half of the night before we switched partners. When most people had left before the end of the square dancing, I was surprised to find she enjoyed herself so much that she was among one of the few people who stayed to the end. I was delighted that I had made the decision to invite her to dance and felt fulfilled that we became friends that evening. FIUTS is always a safe place to make friends and tap into a new self.
Yiru (front, holding yellow hula hoop) facilitating during Campetition 2017
Tips/comments for peer facilitators
Facilitate as many events as you can! Take up this leadership role in every FIUTS events you plan to participate in if possible!
More practically, be physically and emotionally prepared, do thorough research, and anticipate contingencies before events; bring positive energy and enjoy yourself during events; reflect and keep in touch with old and new friends after events.
Reach out and take advantage of FIUTS events to foster new friendships, learn different perspectives, and savor college life.
Check out our past Facilitator Corners:
Omar Altoaimi, Diana Park, Herish Patel, Cece Zhang, Nail Hassairi, Sophia Chakalo, Bader Alfarhan, Peirce Kirkham, Alissa Mustre, Ang Li, Wedward Wei, Terry Jung, Hassan Almuzaini, Isabella Ning, Lucy Deng, Nhung Le, Abigail Lim, Ferris Maghi, Kevin Sander, Joey Liao, Anya Raj, Minhtu Nguyen, Jianyang (Jane) Zhang, Jialu Sun, Fleur Xuanlin Li,