Tracy Adu: Journey Across the Pacific

African Student Union performs at the Black Out pep rally. Tracy Adu (second from the front) danced during the event.

Photo by Megan Novak

African Student Union performs at the Black Out pep rally. Tracy Adu (second from the front) danced during the event.

Jordyn Folsom, Features Editor

As senior Tracy Adu boards her flight to America, she knows she will leave behind the convenience of vendors right outside her front door, the routine she maintained each day and the flavorful Ghanaian food. However, she also knows of the possibilities that await her in the United States. 

In March 2011, Adu and her mother moved to the United States from Ghana to give Adu access to better education and reunite with her father. 

“My mom and I moved to the US partially because our family was broken in a way,” Adu said. “I value where I’m from every day.”  

The process of moving to the United States came with complications. Adu’s father filed for her and her mother to become permanent residents of the U.S., but because the process for her mother took less time, Adu remained in Ghana for a year until she could join her parents. 

“The process was kinda hectic because it took about a year away from both parents which was very stressful,” Adu said. “In addition, when I got here it took a while for me to adjust to my classmates and peers.”

In Ghana, Adu could alternate between the Twi and English languages when talking with her friends. This difference took Adu the most time to become used to. She also remembers the lack of welcome she received from her American peers. 

“My classmates back home were very open and quick to try to make you their new friend,” Adu said. “Everyone seemed a little closed off but still overall friendly.” 

During her junior year, Adu learned about the African Student Union from a senior and joined instantly to help ASU break the myths of Africa and to be around students who have experienced similar situations as her. This year, Adu holds the position of president of ASU.

 “Since I’m the president of ASU, I try to come up with ideas that will give the club some kind of exposure,” Adu said. “I want to help create a different image and help others portray Africa as the beautiful continent it is.” 

Sophomore Rachel Atta-Fynn has been a part of ASU with Adu for two school years. Atta-Fynn serves as the vice president under Adu. 

“[Adu] takes her job as president very seriously,” Atta-Fynn said, “and knows how to balance when it comes to being strict and when it’s time to play.”

Adu values where she came from, and upon joining ASU, she felt prouder than ever to come from Ghana and to be part of a club that highlights her culture. 

“My heritage sets me apart from other people,” Adu said. “However, it also helps me build relationships because most people are interested in individuals that are different from them.”