Chelsea Liu – College Student and A Capella Performer

La Jolla, CA

I am proud of my Taiwanese heritage because it is a country with a sad and beautiful past with a strong fighting spirit for the future.


Who are you?

I am a sophomore at the University of California, San Diego. I was born and raised in Taiwan, and migrated over with my mom when I was 10 years old. Even though I’m not technically American because I don’t have dual-citizenship, I still like to consider myself Taiwanese American. I have attended the Taiwanese American Foundation summer conference since 2000, and love everything about my Taiwanese heritage. I sang and danced all throughout high school, and participated in competitive show choir and musicals. I am currently in an a capella group, the Tritones, on my college campus, and am also actively involved in my sorority, Kappa Kappa Gamma.

What do you do?

Currently, my life is centered on a combination of school, singing, school, sorority commitments, and school. I am pursuing an international studies-economics major, and I plan on attending graduate school for hotel management. I am actively involved in both my a capella group and my sorority, taking up leadership positions in both while juggling coursework and a social life at the same time. Basically, I am living the life of a very busy, but also average college student.

Why are you proud to be of Taiwanese heritage?

I am proud of my Taiwanese heritage because it is a country with a sad and beautiful past with a strong fighting spirit for the future. I was also born in Taipei and lived half of my life there, so I feel a special connection to the country – probably more so than my American-born peers. Even though I’m suppose to be 2nd generation because I am super Americanized and all of my mom’s siblings all immigrated here from Taiwan, I am technically 1st generation since I wasn’t American-born.

What does the future of Taiwanese America look like to you?

Very bright, with lots of beautiful half-Taiwanese babies.

Any additional information you would like to share?

An exciting experience I recently partook in with my college a capella group was singing on stage at the Academy of Country Music Awards (ACMA) with Taylor Swift. Long story short, my a capella group did a rendition of a Taylor Swift song that was discovered by her via YouTube, and the producers of ACMA contacted our business manager to perform as her background choir for the award show. This lead to a whirlwind adventure for me and my group, everything from meeting famous celebrities, performing on national TV, being interviewed by and performing at local news stations, and a live country radio performance and interview.

Lastly, my favorite Taiwanese food include: 鹽酥雞 [crispy chicken], 牛肉麵 [beef noodle soup], 小香腸 [mini Taiwanese sausages], 蓮霧 [lien-wu fruit], and much much more!


4 Responses to “Chelsea Liu – College Student and A Capella Performer”

  1. Angela

    “Lots of half-Taiwanese babies”? So much for pride in Taiwanese heritage!

  2. In response to anna, it’s not so much about acceptance or tolerance versus intolerance. No one is being intolerant of Chelsea for her views. It’s kind of the subtext of what she writes that rubs me the wrong way. Chelsea could have written that her future would be full of gorgeous babies, or she could have written that her future was full of gorgeous Taiwanese babies. And I would consider a baby to a Taiwanese mother to be Taiwanese. But Chelsea has written that she wants half-Taiwanese babies. Now, there’s nothing wrong with that, but let’s look at what this actually says.

    Given that Chelsea is a college student, probability leans that she is not engaged or does not know who will father her children at this point in time. I’m not saying this is impossible, just unlikely. Saying that her future is full of half-Taiwanese babies is her proclamation to the world that she has no plans to have children with a Taiwanese spouse.

    Now, I’m not trying to be a racist or anything. I’m young myself, and I don’t know who my spouse will be, or who I will have children with. Whereas I have a preference to a Taiwanese spouse, I’m quite confident that when the right person comes along, she will be the right person for me because of who she is, and more beyond her ethnicity or how she looks. This is apparently not the case for Chelsea, who knows that if a man is Taiwanese, she will not have children with him. At least, that’s the subtext.

    It’s hurtful here, as a Taiwanese American male, to be marginalized. The United States media does this to us all the time. And now, we have a college girl who claims to be Taiwanese American, and she is. But there’s one thing she’s certain about, and that’s that no Taiwanese man ever has a chance with her. I wouldn’t feel hurt if she had said she wanted Taiwanese babies. Because her babies will be Taiwanese. But when she says her future is full of half-Taiwanese babies, that only excludes one group of people from the picture, and that’s Taiwanese people.

    We can have our preferences for our spouses, and there’s nothing wrong with this. It is fair to have bias and what type of people you find yourself attracted to is no one’s concern. Our preferences are our own choices, and if I happen to like Iranian women who are 163.5 cm tall, then that’s my choice. But I know my future lies with someone, and that someone will be right for me. And in the end, it’s the character of the person, and who they are in this world that matters more than their skin color. I may have a preference for certain types of looks, but if someone perfect comes my way, I’m open to the possibility.

    It’s hurtful to Taiwanese American males that it doesn’t matter who you are, or what type of person you are, or how caring and how much you’ve contributed, or what great times you can have, or how much fun you can have, or just the experiences you can share. With that simple statement, she says that if you’re Taiwanese, I’m not going to consider you.

  3. Damon

    Just for speculation, Chelsea could easily mean that since she was born in Taiwan and that she will most likely marry someone in the United States (of any ethnicity)the half-babies are nationalistically or culturally half babies not necessarily ethnically half-babies.

    On a parallel note, I believe the spirit and strength of a culture is measured best by how well it maintains itself when it is in high levels of interaction with others cultures (this includes marriage to other cultures). Taiwan itself stems from a history of many cultures combining and contrasting their values. To be Taiwanese is to have cultural access (not necessarily ethnic) to this lineage and be proud of it and to realize that the process of encountering new cultures and shaping the Taiwanese culture is not over, but continually being shaped by every generation, every person that can link themselves back with Taiwan.

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