Meiling Liu

Rider Profile
HometownSingapore, Singapore
UniversityUniversity of Illinois
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I was born and raised in sunny Singapore. We are one degree north of the equator, and have lots of sun all year round. Like the climate in my country, I can be described by friends as cheery and vivacious. My mantra in life is “Get busy living, or get busy dying.” I love meeting new people and am always interested in trying new things. My college life is a testament to that. When it was time for me to go to college, I decided that it was time to see the world from a different perspective, and that the United States was going to be the place for me in the next few years. I was also very lucky to have parents who were very supportive of my decision. Adjusting to life in another country where I did not have family nor close friends was definitely something out of my comfort zone and made me more self-reliant and stronger in many ways. The challenges of being away from home also helped me learnt so much more about myself. I would not say I am immune to challenges in life; but I definitely take a more positive approach to it, and dare to push my limits further than before.

Personal Statement

Whenever anyone asks me: “Who do you look up to the most?”, I would not hesitate to say that it’s my dad. My father was diagnosed with nose cancer almost 5 years ago already, and it was one of the most painful periods of my life. I remember when he first told us of his condition, I was paralyzed with fear. I did not know how to react; should I soothe him, or should I demand to know answers to his condition. My dad’s first thought was to keep it from our extended family, mostly because if they knew, my grandmother would find out, and he knew she would be devastated. His medical treatment had caused him to suffer from some side effects that affected his throat but he never missed a day of work even though he taught classes. My dad’s determination and strength shone through during his toughest times, and never once wallowed in self-pity. I think his display of concern for people around him, instead of thinking about the what-ifs of his situation is very admirable and it is something I aspire to take up on myself too.