David Shiang’s welcoming arms as Resident Assistant


Eli Tiao

David Shiang, Resident Assistant at Westmont

Angela Tran , Staff Writer

This second-year student at Westmont is a friendly face everywhere he goes, from Clark Halls to the classrooms. Introducing David Shiang, a proud warrior of Westmont and servant of God.

His first year at Westmont, Shiang was elected as Page Senator for the Westmont College Student Association. In this student government role, he enjoyed serving his fellow Page Hall first-years, greeting everyone by name. Through this experience, he learned about “just being [himself] and knowing that what [he has] to give is really able to help others.”

Using these people skills, he transitioned into his current position as the Resident Assistant of Clark R. Because Clark residents are mostly first and second-year students, he says, “Coming to college and being away from home in a new environment is hard, but if I can be there for [anyone] who’s new here, I’m happy to be part of that welcoming environment.” 

What motivates Shiang to be a powerhouse of inclusivity? The biggest impact has been the loss of his friend from home, Sarah Shulze. She died by suicide in April 2022. Shiang says, “The grieving process was so much to go through,” and it solidified his perspective on “how we just have to check in on each other and be there for each other, even if someone’s a stranger.” After speaking in chapel during National Suicide Prevention Week, David said people he knew and didn’t know thanked him for sharing about Sarah. “It really touched me,” he says, “[because] it definitely came from a place of pain but I know it’s what Sarah would’ve wanted … [for me to] let others know that we’re here for them and that God loves them and that I love them too.”

On the importance of checking in with and caring for others, Shiang says, “Intentionality in relationships is something that I’ve tried to do.” He has especially accomplished this through “indies”—Westmont slang for one-on-one hangouts with people. Due to his background, Shiang enjoys talking with anyone. He grew up in Los Angeles around others’ different cultural backgrounds that are “each beautiful in their own way,” he says. Another factor is his grandmother, who raised his mom as a single parent in Taiwan and constantly persevered and trusted God to provide for her family. This showed Shiang how to “really love and care for people” because “we’re more than our jobs, hobbies, and leadership positions.” Undecided about his college major and career, he is confident to face whatever his future holds, saying, “God will open the doors that he needs to open as long as I continue to trust him and love people.”

Shiang loves hanging out, playing basketball, and playing piano. According to his friend, second-year Kylie Carter, “He’s a social butterfly! He wants to make sure everybody’s included.” Carter adds, “He’s very big on being a good person to everyone—not out of selfish ambition but [in a] ‘how can I love others in order to glorify God’ [kind of way].” If you have any questions, doubts or fears about your time in college, Shiang hopes to be a source of support.

As a message of encouragement Shiang says, “You are important. You are appreciated. You can give back to the community in any way that you can. Jesus loves you. Res Life is here for you, and I’m here for you, too.”

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