• Keepin' It Real,  Misc

    Living Within the Pages

    Hi APC, my name is Ines! I am 16 and I am a senior in a French high school. I am Moroccan on my father’s side, and French on my mother’s, but I have spent my entire childhood in France. Writing is a tough exercise, especially when you have a lot of ideas in mind. I have decided I would use this white page to talk to you about literature, and about how I discovered my-feminist-self through reading. I guess I can only consider myself a lucky person when it comes to books: my mum is a literature teacher, and I remember spending hours as a kid in front of…

  • Keepin' It Real

    Individuality Is a Weapon

    Heyyy APC. My name is Mars, short for Kumares, and I’m 16-years old, living on the west side of Jersey City, NJ.  I’m Filipino-American, or FilAm; and I’m an artist and musician, amongst other things. Most importantly, this makes me a creator; and in my opinion, that is one of the greatest things you can be at such a young age. The vitality of discovering self-value and expressing individuality is a common issue in society today.  It took quite a while for me to break out of my shell and figure out who I am. Of course, I’m still on my way to truly figuring it out, but in the years…

  • Keepin' It Real

    Divisions

    Hi APC! My name is Lidia Solomon, and I’m a 17-year-old from North Carolina. My race is black though I identify more with my Eritrean nationality ( barely any people know this country exists sadly ) The piece I’m submitting was an independent writing project my AP Lang teacher asked my class to write. I chose to write a poem and I knew I wanted it to be about something I was really passionate about. Trying to figure out which passion of mine I would want to write about wasn’t that hard. I like to watch spoken word videos on Youtube and the day this project was assigned I went…

  • Dear Brown Girl,  Keepin' It Real

    Rainbows

    Hello APC, my name is Laila Stevens and I am an 18-year-old interdisciplinary artist from Queens, New York. I am currently a freshman at the Fashion Institute of Technology studying Photography & Related Media. I hold strong pride in identifying as a Queer Black Womxn Artist because it fully encompasses the parts that make me whole, inclusive and personal. If anyone were to ask me who I am, I would tell them just that. It is my belief that POC LGBTQ+ identifying folks have incredibly valuable perspectives, holding incredible strength in their voices and stories.  The more I discovered each side of who I was both interchangeably and in collaboration,…

  • Dear Brown Girl,  Keepin' It Real

    Mixed Pride

    Hey APC! My name is Lara Bateman, I’m 16 years old from Hong Kong. Here to write to you about my experience in finding my identity, or my journey so far.  With a Filipina mother and an English father growing up in Hong Kong, my identity wasn’t the easiest code to crack, and it didn’t help that I liked girls too. I am a Filipina girl with light skin and freckles, I am an English girl with Asian features and dark hair—well right now, it’s pink. Being accepted in both of my cultures was/is really difficult for me and I have always felt very distant from my heritage. I was…

  • Keepin' It Real

    Speak Up

    Hey APC! I’m Ray, a 22-year-old “Manifinesser” hell-bent on dreaming, cultivating and building a world where those who look like me can belong.  However, this 22-year journey of figuring out who “Ray” is was no easy feat. I use “Ray” as a way to describe my inner voice that is truly an extension of myself. You see, like so many of you, I too grew up within predominantly white spaces. In these spaces I found myself hiding. Shrinking. Silent. Diluting. Too afraid to be seen or heard because the status quo made it clear that my presence was just for appearances. So I played my part, stayed inside the lines,…

  • Keepin' It Real,  Mental Health

    A Letter for Sulli and Goo Hara

    Hey APC, it’s Esther Park. I started writing this a few days after Sulli’s passing, and now with the saddening news of her friend, Goo Hara’s death, I thought it would be timely to finally share my thoughts on the subject.  Sulli, a member of the K-pop group f(x) was found dead in her home on October 14th. This was a young woman of 25 who had been facing online bullying and harassment for a good part of the last decade. When she was photographed with her older boyfriend, they said she was not dedicated to her music and her fans, promiscuous and troublesome. When she uploaded braless pictures, they…

  • Keepin' It Real

    Drawing Lines, Forming Borders

    Hello Afro Puff Chronicles, my name is Mariana Benitez Arreola. I am a Mexican-American female from Eastside San Jose in California. I am currently a senior at William C. Overfelt high school in California. These two pieces were inspired by my experience of living in a lower-income area of San Jose, in which the majority of people are minorities and are greatly affected by immigration. My neighborhood is often misjudged and has false pretences. Due to its reputation as a lower-income community, a lot of stereotypes are used against the individuals that are apart of the community. These skewed views cause a divide which is why San Jose is a…

  • Keepin' It Real

    Growing Up Adopted

    Hi APC, my name is Jasmine Rose Martin & I’m a junior at West Orange High school. I was adopted at a young age by a Caucasian gay couple. My family also consists of my un-biological sister. My godparents are lesbian, and they also have two children three years apart from one another. Living with too males has its ups and downs. For example, the fashion talk and fun gossip talk is so fun, but when it comes down to female needs it’s not all that fun; however, my fathers do a good job at understanding. I personally would like to have a female figure in my life to talk…

  • Keepin' It Real,  Mental Health

    A Unique Combination

    Hello APC! My name is Myrthe Nymph and I’m a Dutch filmmaker and writer of Chinese origin. At the moment, I am 21 years old and study at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands.  Filmmaking and psychology. I often get questioned about this odd combination. I was born April 1st 1998 into a musical family. My dad and mom love making music and even used to be in a music band before they became social workers. I had the privilege to learn as many musical instruments, dance styles and other art forms as I wished to. I was just 12 years old when my passion for filmmaking and photography…

  • Keepin' It Real,  Writing

    High up in the Ivory Tower

    Hi APC! I’m Francesca, and I live on College Confidential. You laugh, but it’s true: the uncharted wilderness of this website is like when the ruthless contributors of Reddit meet a Wikipedia wormhole. Specifically, I find myself drawn to the terrifying, mesmerizing, and strangely addictive world of the Ivy Leagues.  I am awed by how videos of Harvard acceptance letters go viral on YouTube, how celebrities pay small fortunes to ensure their childrens’ admission, and how those infamous single-digit acceptance rates haunt thousands of high schoolers every year.  Now, let me first make a disclaimer. I neither love nor despise the Ivies; I’m just… fascinated by them. If the college…

  • Keepin' It Real

    The Cycle

    Hey APC! I’m Isabella Calix and I am a staff writer for APC; I’m actually responsible for translating all the articles on APC to Spanish! I’m a first-year at Smith College, a women’s college in Northampton, Massachusetts and I’m 17 years old. I hope to study public health, biology, sociology, and Latin American Studies in college (I’m undecided on majors). I’m a New Yorker and Latina. My ethnicities, more specifically, is Honduran and Italian. Writing is my favorite hobby. I grew up bilingual and speak both English and Spanish. I spent high school writing and translating my own pieces for my newspaper. Also, I am excited to translate more APC…