Humans of Harker: Joyce Li uses softball and art to adjust to her new environment


Melissa Kwan

“It’s a lot about bringing the community together, using visual elements to bring everyone together through art, and just to give everyone the opportunity to see that there is a lot of art in life. It’s something that makes life more interesting and something that makes life more vivid,” Joyce Li (12) said.

by Anika Rajamani, Reporter

Three years ago, Joyce Li (12) and her family moved from Taiwan to the United States, leaving her school, friends and her home behind.

She attended freshman and sophomore year at Monta Vista high school before transferring to Harker for her final two years of high school. Moving to the U.S., she began to participate in school sports such as softball and golf.

“I like softball,” Joyce said. “It’s really a lot of mental thinking in the game, a lot of just training with your peers and building a great team.”

As a freshman in Monta Vista, the junior varsity softball coach decided that since the pitcher on the team was unable to play, Joyce would learn the position. Starting from the fundamentals as well as developing the mental aspect, Joyce struggled during practices and games.

“I practiced a lot to get started. At first, I really was bad. My first game was terrible,” Joyce said. “I had just rainbow pitches every single one, balls everywhere, and I barely finished the game, but then I got much better, and now I can pitch strikes in a row.”

Not only in her high school softball career, but in her academic career, she has cherished one piece of advice her father gave her.

“Whatever you want to do, just keep doing it without thinking ‘This is a terrible thing’ or ‘I shouldn’t push through with this career because it won’t make money’ or ‘I shouldn’t pursue this career because I’m not good enough,’” Joyce said. “Instead of thinking all that, just keep doing what you want to do and improve yourself over time, and there will be a place for you in that field.”

Since she was a child, Joyce has always loved art, as both her parents were very interested in art as well. She continued to take art classes as she grew up, and now she is the president of the art club at Harker.

“Art is the way I think of the world and the way I use to express myself,” she said. “It’s like meditation. I just sit in front of my piece for the whole night and enjoy some quiet, quality time. It calms me down and it makes me think of the things I wouldn’t have if I didn’t have this base.”