At the age of 15, I moved from my hometown of Harbin, China, to Mie, Japan, knowing no Japanese language or culture. I was placed into a high school that had low expectations for its graduates: not one had attended a formal university. Instead of following the standard path for women in the area, getting married and becoming a housewife, I pushed aside my high school responsibilities and independently studied English from scratch for 14 hours a day for two years. After eight attempts at the university-entrance English test, I became the first student from her high school who was accepted to a formal university.
During my junior year of college, I founded TEDxRoppongi with the mission of encouraging social innovation by creating a platform for thinkers and innovators in Japan.
Through designing TED-like experiences, I have found my passion of creating experiences that help people connect, communicate, and collaborate. I have since dedicated my efforts to create empowering experiences for global women's initiatives, such as iamtheCODE: a movement to advance STEAMD education and create 1 million women and girls coders by 2030; Girls20: a program to cultivate a new generation of female leaders and increase female labor force participation worldwide; Womenwill: a Google initiative to create economic opportunity for women everywhere, and help transform ways of working to make workplace practices more inclusive.
I have adopted a few of Toni Morrison’s words as my motto: