Emily Hwang

An active member of her community, Emily has worked with such organizations as Girls Inc., NEDA, and Girls Helping Girls in an effort to empower young women to become confident, effective agents of social change. She was an involved and dedicated leader in her high school, where she gave much of her time to a student-run Peer Support group as well as to the Drama Department. Her passions include theatre, women's empowerment, literature, and psychology.



Today is April 6th, which means that in two weeks time, I will be home.  And I wonder what will remain of all this when I’m in my own house with my own family, lying on my own bed at night, struggling to see the stars through the LA smog.  In two weeks time, I’ll…

08 May, 2013

Preparing for Departure: A Feelings Post

Words are elusive to me now.  Perhaps the effects of the monstrous exhaust fumes that billow out from behind Riobamba buses like parachutes and dissipate into small portions of carcinogens to be inhaled by unsuspecting townspeople are manifesting on my tongue, because it feels ashen and heavy.  I lack words. The titanic shadow of the…

19 March, 2013

Midpoint Reflection: What You Expected

What you want is romance. unpretentious country folk with toothless grins and simple dreams of owning a washer and my 10,000 watt, bicultural, hot-off-the-college-prep-academy grill complexity quieting to a dull  ommmmm  Eat, Pray, Love style. What you expected were children and my 19 year old, non-Ecuadorian hands molding them like clay into my idea of model…

07 January, 2013

Reproductive Rights in Latin America

Read the original publication in the Stanford Social Innovation Review by clicking here. _________________________________ Just last month, Uruguay became the third Latin American nation subsequent to Cuba and Guyana to legalize all first-trimester abortions. Although a newsworthy move, the new legislation, which was passed with a 17-14 majority, is not as transparent as it seems….

27 November, 2012

What I’ve been up to…

Hola amigos! Below, you will find a photo gallery that hopefully provides you with a glimpse into my life here in Riobamba, Ecuador!  Also, here are some links leading to projects I recently worked on. Here is a blog post I wrote sharing my observations about reproductive rights in Latin America: And here is a…

27 November, 2012

Seeking Identity in the Company of Family

I came to Latin American with various disclaimers in tow about possible impending struggles. The majority of them- the ones concerning safety, Ecua-time (the cultural phenomenon of national tardiness), Machismo, and the drinking culture- were anticipated and unfortunately, warranted. But I also received a few notes of caution about the intense unity of families here, to…

27 November, 2012

A Letter to Quito

Dearest Quito, You are a noisy city.  Even in the second before I drift off into sleep or the second after I awake, even with my eyes closed and lights off and consciousness wavering, I could never pretend to be anywhere else.  You are too full and thick.  Your smells (both the yummy food ones…

17 September, 2012

Labeling Myself

I do this thing where I label myself- Extrovert, ENFP, Sagittarius, Advocate, Actress, Girl.  Every trait or behavior that I have ever manifested, every emotion that I have ever experienced has been thoroughly analyzed and neatly placed into one of the myriad categories that I use to define myself.  And if it doesn’t fit, it isn’t…

10 July, 2012

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Emily Hwang