Artifact 4

My fourth artifact is the 2019 VSA Culture Show. At the end of my freshman year, I took over my term as the new Philanthropy Project Chair for the Vietnamese Student Association. This role challenged me to change the way I had approached leadership positions. This position was a weekly responsibility of close to 12 bours in the months leading up the show. I struggled to balance my academics, personal life, and mental health. I kept wondering if I had made the right decision by taking on this responsibilty because I began to sacrifice parts of my life for a student organization. I reached the darkest and most difficult time of my life this past winter.

I decided to persevere because I had too much respect for the other leaders to give up. I remembered the reason I joined VSA in the first place. I grew up knowing nothing about my culture except for which foods tasted good and how to greet my grandparents when they walked in. VSA helped me to rediscover a large part of my identity and it made me proud to be Vietnamese-American. Traveling with VSA provided me with lifelong friends I never knew I needed and a greater appreciation for Vietnamese culture.

The theme of our 2019 show was One Day. One day, I will realize how far I come and remember when I thought it was impossible. To be able to smile because I’m proud of myslef and the person I’ve fought to become.

Artifact 3

As my second artifact, I chose this photo taken during the Fall retreat. Unfortunately, I was unable to attend the first night of retreat due to academic commitments. My pass/fail standing in chemistry was dependent upon my performance on the third midterm and there was a very important review session during the first night of Fall Retreat. I was faced with a tough decision of staying back to study, or going to retreat to have fun and form connections with my fellow Mounties. I felt conflicted because I had been looking forward to retreat since I first heard about it. I chose to stay back because school comes before everything for me, but I was able to find transportation with some other Mounties who had to stay back that night; We arrived at Camp Akita early the following morning. We were still able to take part in activities and I still love my experience in this Scholars community. Another positive side: I was able to earn an A on my chemistry midterm. I chose this photo because it represents that I will face difficult choices in life, but compromises can be made and everything works out in the end.

Artifact 2

When deciding which college I would ultimately attend, athletics and school spirit was a large component. I grew up watching Ohio State games, so I was ecstatic to be attending football games at The Shoe. I had gone to all the games this year, but Penn State was very special because the experience I gained was unlike any other game. For my second artifact, I chose a photo of my friends and I during the OSU vs Penn State game. Although the game had a rough start, I had a lot of fun with my fellow Mounties. From screaming at the plays, the unbelievable comeback in the fourth quarter, rushing the field, to singing Carmen Ohio, we can all unanimously agree that this was the best game thus far. Although, I got a cold, lost my voice for a full week, and fell down the bleachers, I would do it all over again because it was worth it. Best of all, I got to go through all of this with my fellow Mounties. This is why I chose a photo from the Penn State game as my second artifact.


Kaitlynn T. Nguyen          


Springboro High School, Springboro, Ohio

Graduated with Honors and Distinction

4.3 GPA      |      Spring 2017

Bachelor of Science, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio

Major: Systems and Behavorial Neuroscience

3.1 GPA     |      Spring 2021 (Expected)


Vietnamese Student Association Collective Philanthropy Chair, Columbus, OH (August 2018-Present)

  • Inform Eboard and general members of what CPP is and what the current beneficiary is
  • Raise awareness about beneficiary and what VSA does as a whole
  • Contact community for sponsorships for the annual culture show

Tutor/Peer Leader at Karl Road Homework Help Center, Columbus, OH (September 2018 – Present)

  • guiding students in underprivileged Columbus schools to find resources to succeed in school
  • provide emotional support and form friendships with the children
  • helping to develop study habits and instill motivation in students (K-12)
  • tutoring in STEM, English, and Social Studies K-12

Mount Leadership Society, Columbus, OH (August 2017 – Present)

  • Created in 1999, MLS is named after Ruth Weimer Mount and is Scholars program composed of students committed to leadership and community service

Media and Archives Committee Chair, Columbus, OH (April 2018 – Present)

  • Trained under university guidelines to properly market and budget for Mount Leadership Society
  • Create graphics, presentations, pamphlets, signs, fliers, etc for MLS events
  • Photograph and maintain 20 years of history and archives
  • Delegation of tasks to three subcommittees
  • Communicate with Scholars program coordinator via formal weekly reports and plan weekly committee meetings

Volunteer Swim Coach, Springboro, OH (August 2014 – 2018)

  • lead group of kids with mental and physical disabilities through water activities
  • provide emotional support and form friendships

Patient Ambassador at James at Martha Morehouse Outpatient Care, Columbus, OH (January 2019-present)

  • walking patients to registration and other places in the care center
  • wayfinding and maintaining overall flow of registration area


Hostess at Applebee’s, Springboro, OH (December 2016 – April 2017)

  • Greeted and seated guests and assist servers when needed
  • Maintain dining room flow and guest satisfaction

Sales Associate at J. Crew Factory, Monroe, OH (June 2018 – present; seasonal)

  • Greeted customers, promote sales and specials, and sell merchandise
  • Cashier duties, fill online orders, perform inventory, and general maintenance of store


Ms. Kathy Krajnak

Mount Leadership Society Program Coordinator

College of Arts and Sciences

2125 N. High Street, Columbus, OH 43210

Artifact 1

My culture and ethnic background has always been a part of my life, but it has never been at the forefront. I was born and raised in a predominately white, suburban city with very limited diversity. This has caused me to grow very distant from my Vietnamese background, and in a way, reject it. This is something that I have made a conscious effort to change during my college experience. My older cousins were both heavily involved in the Vietnamese Student Association (VSA) at their school and it gave them the foundation for many of their lifelong friends. When I came to OSU, I knew that I wanted to get involved in VSA and I have thoroughly enjoyed it thus far. For my first artifact, I chose an áo dài, which is a traditional dress representative of Vietnamese culture. Since joining VSA, I have been motivated to speak more Vietnamese when talking to my parents. Through doing this, I already feel more connected to them and my grandparents. The áo dái reminds me of when I was younger and would travel to Vietnam to celebrate the new year. Now, it reminds me of my roots and why I should try to stay connected to them. This is why I chose an áo dài as my first artifact.

About Me

My name is Kait Nguyen. I am a first year majoring in neuroscience on a pre-med path and I am also part of Mount Leadership Scholars. In high school, I was very involved in community service and held various leadership positions in National Honor Society, Interact Club, and student government. I also clarinet in the marching band and ran track and field. I was, and still am, passionate about helping those with mental and/or physical disabilities. As a volunteer swim coach, I had the opportunity to teach elementary age kids with disabilities how to swim. When not in class, I enjoy painting, music, running, and spending time with friends. I like every kind of music, from rap to jazz to country. Thanks for reading!


The GOALS created by the honors college are a great outline of ways I should get involved while studying at Ohio State. Through global awareness, I can become more well versed and prepared to communicate with people from all walks of life. The ESHESA class taken with Mount Leadership stresses the importance of being culturally competent and regulating your voice. With original inquiry, I am now in an executive board position with VSA and it has motivated me to think creatively through getting involved with different traditional dance styles, fundraising ideas, and it has brought me more in touch with my parent’s history. With academic enrichment, I am taking classes that directly pertain to my major and they inspire me to think beyond the scope of the classroom. The class encourages students to look at peer review journals that contain content that is not directly covered in lecture. In leadership development, I have taken on the position of Philanthropy Chair in VSA and Media and Archive Co-Chair in Mount. These positions teach me how to collaborate with others and provide a stepping stone to future roles I may have. In service engagement, I will be volunteering at the Karl Road Homework Help Center for ESHESA and Mount. This service-learning allows me to serve alongside the individuals at the Homework Help center and learn from them as well.