The most exciting thing to me about being in Beyond Boundaries is my peers. It seems that everyone has a big problem or question left unanswered in the world that they’ve been thinking about how to tackle. I find that people in Beyond Boundaries, beyond having an interdisciplinary mindset, also have a very service-oriented mindset, one that’s dedicated to serving a larger community or purpose.

Jamie Xu (Class 2023), who is studying philosopshy-neuroscience-psychology (PNP), music, along with human-computer interaction, says that she chose Washington University in St. Louis because of the “balance” she could have between her “academic” and “musical” interests. She really values the flexibility because it makes her “not only a well-rounded student but a well-rounded thinker.” In addition to her strong focus on her academic work, Jamie has enjoyed spending time with a variety of campus groups including the China Care Club, Design for America, the Asian American Association, as well as a more recent involvement in the Bridge Club. She also greatly anticipates her continued and even increased involvement in Fox Friday events (art workshops for non-Sam Fox students) and the events hosted by the Skandalaris Center for Interdisciplinary Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

As a semi-finalist for the Dean James E. McLeod First-Year Writing Prize, an opportunity that emboldens “first-year students in the College of Arts & Sciences to begin engaging in research in the early stages of their undergraduate careers,” Jamie was recognized for her an academic paper on “the stigmatization of mental health in second-generation Chinese Americans.” In addition, Jamie recently was a grant recipient for a Creative Collaboration Project. Her exciting project gave her the chance to compose a film score in collaboration with a filmmaker and has allowed her to gain much insight into “how the medium of sound and video interact.”

Outside of her busy life of university-related activities, Jamie serves as the Deputy Editor for The Unorthodocs, an online magazine that encourages “bizarre ideas” and is a place with “no restrictions hindering your idiosyncratic quirks.” She also learned some new skills during her summer internship at Cherish. At this startup, which works to “strengthen parent teen relationships with personalized SMS based coaching and actionable tips and insights for parents of teens,” Jamie thoroughly appreciated her ability to try out blog writing and app building. She says that she hopes to “get to experiment more with the product design realm.”

To learn more about Jamie, check out the #4 Beyond Boundaries pod episode that she does with her program peer Katrin Gatz.