Oberlin Blogs

Pleased to meet me

October 16, 2011

Sophia Chen ’12

Yeah, this post title is a Replacements album. I stole it. Anyway, here's a more detailed, list-y description of myself. Speaking of stealing, I stole a lot of this format from my pal Zoë, who is a former blogger and recent graduate.

Name: Sophia
Graduation year: 2012
Major: Physics
Public or private high school? Public
Dorm: Currently off-campus, but I spent three years in Asia House!
Food situation: I ate in the dining halls my first year, in Pyle Inn Co-op for the next two years, and I'm currently in a faux-op with nine of my friends where we take turns cooking once a week!

Past Winter Terms: Biomedical lab internship
Chinese Health Care research
Educational physics videos

Instruments I play:
Piano - Fifteen years of classical, two years of jazz
Guitar - It doesn't really count. I'm currently taking jazz lessons.
Harmonica - Self-taught, and I'm amazing.
The spoons - I'm a virtuoso. I may offer master classes at the Conservatory one of these days.

Favorite music:
My favorite genres are classical (romantic and impressionist piano music...), bluegrass, Radiohead, and I've recently gotten into jazz more (Brad Mehldau, Chick Corea). Sometimes I also listen to Jason Derülo. My favorite band EVER is the Punch Brothers, who performed at Oberlin two years ago:

My housemate Chloë is apparently going to marry the banjo player, Noam. Please wish her luck in this endeavor.

Foreign languages I speak:
Mandarin - I speak it at home
French - five years, but I forget most of it

Favorite classes:
Introduction to Computer Science (CS150), Electricity and Magnetism (PHYS311), Chinese Calligraphy, Public Policy in America

What do you do when you're not in class?
When I feel particularly exciting, I do homework and work in my atomic spectroscopy lab. I sing beautiful music with my housemate, Chloë, in our duo, the Clever Brothers. I practice piano and guitar, go to CSA meetings, dance for the lion dance troupe, cook lots of food, watch The Simpsons, and sometimes I even play ping-pong. Now that I'm 21, I am known to frequent the local saloon, the Feve. I used to write a lot, but that's kind of been replaced by studying for the physics GRE. I do keep up semi-regularly with my cooking blog, Cookery Pokery.

Favorite books (not in order):
The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky (yep, I'm the kind of person who puts The Brothers Karamazov on a list of favorite books)
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Klay by Michael Chabon
Harry Potter (not gonna lie)
David Beckham's autobiography (okay, that's a lie)
I also have a soft spot for dystopian novels.

Fun facts:
-I took two classes at Oberlin that had "The Meaning of Life" in their course title.
-I have an extraordinary love for cured meats and pickles. I am helpless before a tray of sliced Spanish ham or a jar of kimchi.
-I do not like most sweets. I do like cake and ice cream.
-I watched the sun set on the beach in Hawai'i this summer, and I want you to see it with me.

Responses to this Entry


I play spoons! It's like my only instrument I play semi-well and semi-regularly at this point. I should have asked my dad to show you more things on them when you met him over the summer!

I also love cured meats and pickled things and have gone on crazy adventures to find both.

Posted by: Ma'ayan on October 17, 2011 11:48 AM

I'd definitely take that spoons class:)

Posted by: Ashley Byrd on October 17, 2011 1:41 PM

Haha, that comment was actually a bit tongue-in-cheek. I am quite an amateur spoons player. But I am intrigued by the interest in the spoons!

Posted by: Sophia on October 17, 2011 2:40 PM

When you record your first official Clever Brothers music video, will you post it here?

Posted by: Anonymous on October 17, 2011 7:10 PM

I would watch the sunset with you.

Posted by: Zoë on October 17, 2011 8:13 PM

Hi, I'm a senior in high school, and I'm definitely considering a physics major at Oberlin. I was just wondering what kind of opportunities physics majors have after they finish their undergrad. I actually have a lot of questions about Oberlin and the experience, and you seem like a good person to ask since you are also a physics nerd. Any information is greatly appreciated. I'll leave you my email address, and you can email me if you want to answer some of my questions. THANKS!!!! jam.muskopf@gmail.com

Posted by: Jack on November 8, 2011 11:22 PM

Hi, I'm a senior in HS right now. Thinking about applying to Oberlin. Can I email you with some questions about Oberlin. Thank you for your help. I

Posted by: Anonymous on September 25, 2012 3:39 PM

Yes, absolutely you can e-mail me. Sorry for the late reply, I just found your comment. If you leave me another comment here and leave your e-mail address, I'll be able to contact you.

Posted by: Sophia on October 14, 2012 10:08 PM

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