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#RedefineAtoZ: Vincent Zhou caught world's attention with impressive Olympic debut

Figure skater Vincent Zhou made his Olympic debut in PyeongChang, giving the world a glimpse of a bright future ahead in his career.
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NAME: Vincent Zhou

AGE: 17


TWITTER: @govincentzhou / INSTAGRAM: @govincentzhou

How do you introduce yourself?

I'm Vincent Zhou. I'm a 17-year-old Team USA figure skater and I was a 2018 Olympian.

What inspires you?

My own desire to be the best at whatever I do. I've always had that natural perfectionism within me.

What challenges you?

I tend to overthink things, not just in skating, so overcoming the negative thoughts produced by my own mind can be a challenge.

Image: World Figure Skating Championships 2018
Vincent Zhou performs during the Men's Free Skating event at the World Figure Skating Championships in Assago, Italy, on March 24.Roberto Bregani / EPA

Tell us about the biggest risk you ever took.

When I was 8, I left my life as I knew it behind, moving hundreds of miles away and switching to online school in order to nurture my young talent in skating. My mom left her job to come with me. Our family sacrificed its unity and almost all our resources in order to do so.

What are you reading/watching/listening to these days?

I'm currently on my fourth time through Ernest Cline's "Ready Player One." I listen to soft pop and chill trap. I don't watch TV.

If you weren’t doing what you’re doing now, what career would you want to pursue?

I would be studying economics to prepare myself for business school. I want to set myself on a practical, realistic path for the future.

What’s your motto?

Today is the first day of the rest of my life!

I celebrate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month because...

I'm proud of what my family and many like mine have accomplished. My parents came to this country with just the clothes on their backs and a suitcase full of dreams. They established themselves as functioning members of society and raised kids with good morals and values, just like so many other Asian-American immigrants did. That is something to be very, very proud of.

NBC Asian America Presents: A to Z aims to celebrate the emerging voices and breakout stars of the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities. These individuals aren’t just reading the dictionary of what it means to be Asian American and Pacific Islander in America; they’re writing new definitions every day.

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