For our June Member of the Month, we interviewed superstar member Bryan Yan! Read on to learn more about him.

Tell us about yourself! It can be about anything – where you grew up, your professional background, your hobbies, etc.

Hi, my name is Bryan Yan. I grew up in Canada, and I moved to New York City about six years ago for my career as a software engineer for Bloomberg. I haven’t left the city or the company since. 

I never thought I would stay here for so long. I always thought of New York as a place to jump start my career then move on to something bigger and greater. But this city can somehow provide me with limitless opportunities to network and grow, and it’s not only just my career. For example, I enjoy attending the many flavors of professional networking sessions to build up my professional contacts, as well as finding a group of friends who I can play badminton with. Also, the amazing stories and life struggles I’ve heard from the amazing people I met along the way really inspired me to challenge my own definition of success. Perhaps it’s this larger sense of fulfillment that has kept me here. 

Why did you join TAP? What are your favorite events?

I heard about TAP from one of the previous Members of the Month! She said that there are many professional and social activities that match my interests. I joined the organization to attend the many amazing events, and I met many nice and friendly people along the way, but eventually I stayed for the sport activities such as badminton, rock climbing, and (who could ever forget it) the Huge Once-In-a-Year TAP skiing trip! That was such a memorable weekend with many fun filled activities! And best of all, there were many people to do it together! From that trip alone, I met a lot of friendly and fun-loving people and even up-leveled my skills in snowboarding!

Tell us something cool that happened to you this past year.

I have to admit that I am not a good cook. I only know how to cook simple things like fried rice, egg drop soup with tomatoes, and chicken and mushroom broth. However, recently I got a really good deal from Blue Apron who shipped me a few fancy recipes. Among them was my favorite food: medium rare rib-eye steak with mashed potatoes on the side. I was very nervous that I would forget to add some ingredients or mess up one of the cooking steps or burn the steak. But somehow the smell of the delicious steak channeled my inner chef who didn’t even need to follow the recipe to the dot! After cooking with my heart, soul and spirit, the rib-eye steak actually turned out comparable to restaurant quality! The smell was fantastic, the taste was really yummy, and it even turned out to be medium rare the way I liked it! I was so proud of myself as it was my first time cooking steak or anything requiring more than 2 steps. Oh, and I took a picture of my creation too! =)

What’s your favorite Taiwanese food and why?

My favorite Taiwanese food is A-Gei! I was lucky enough to try the authentic and homemade version in a small alleyway when I traveled to Taipei a long time ago. It was recommended by my enthusiastic tour guide, who was a Travel and Tourism undergraduate student at the time. 

A-Gei is a local specialty dish that is a large fried tofu skin stuffed with vermicelli noodles. The version I tried was doused in a bowl of soup. On the outside, it looks like any other common fried tofu, but when I took a bite to discover the tasty and chewy vermicelli noodles, I just couldn’t resist having a second one! I haven’t had any other type of food quite like it ever since! The closest food I can compare it to is a Xiao Long Bao (Chinese soup dumpling). 

What’s your advice for newer members who want to get more involved?

I recommend trying all the events that TAP has to offer, even if some of them are beyond your comfort zone, because a) you might discover new activities that you didn’t know you could possibly like, and b) you get to meet amazing people that you didn’t think could ever exist! 

Once you find your favorite events, get to know the TAP organizer so they can get you updates on everything related to your favorite activities, then talk to them to find ways to get more involved and build our awesome inclusive community!