My name is Baiqing (“By-Ching”) Luo. I was born in 1994 in a rural village in Southern China. My family soon migrated further south to find work. For many years, we moved from place to place, where my parents followed construction projects, working as builders. Twenty some years later, I packed three suitcases and moved again. Only this time, I left the country by myself to attend Osgoode Hall Law School.
Though no stranger to relocating and adapting, I found it challenging as a newcomer to Canada and a law student with no background or connection to Canadian law or society. For a while, I was disoriented, anxious, and felt like a total outsider because I knew absolutely nothing, not even how to engage in small talk. Having faced adversity before, I said I would give myself a year before deciding whether to return home.
Fast forward three years, and I am an articling student with the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General.
I often think about those who helped me, and also those who I may be able to help by sharing my story. So, I want to try answering this question: What helped me land on my feet in Canada? It was not my grades and certainly not my connections. If I was to offer one answer, it would be the conscious effort to build contextual intelligence.