Claire Hampton with her mother. Claire was born in Seoul, South Korea and came to the United States when she was four months old.

Growing up Asian in a white family; one adoptee’s struggle

By Earn Saenmuk/For CU-CitizenAccess.org — There was a girl in my Korean class. Well, there were more than one, but this particular one was special. She was very nice, and her Korean was so good that I felt a little intimidated. I noticed while the teacher was taking attendance that her last name did not sound like an Asian last name. Her name was Claire Hampton, though she told the teacher that she also has a Korean name, Hwaesuk.

A small community of cyclists in Champaign-Urbana enjoying bike polo. Spring 2014.

Bike friendly Chambana draws new version of polo

Champaign-Urbana is a biking town, and as an avid biker, that was something I noticed very quickly upon moving here.

Bike lanes run all through both cities as well as campus. Shops like The Bike Co-op and Neutral Cycle provide local cyclists with affordable service and offer to teach people who come in how to maintain a bike themselves, while other stores deal with high-end, professional equipment. People get together to go on group rides.

Students slacklining at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Spring 2014

Slackers on a line

Klara Debie/For CU-CitizenAccess.org — On one of the first sunny days of spring, I saw some people balancing themselves on a tightrope – or that’s what I thought they were doing. They had put a rope between two trees on the quad and were walking across it, running sometimes, jumping on, doing tricks and often falling off it. They were slacklining. As with anything out of the ordinary, I was gripped the moment I saw it. How were they able to find their balance on such a thin, unstable surface?