Finding the work of my life - on accident
During my freshman year of college, I accidentally filled out the application to be a journalist at The Daily of the University of Washington, which was my college’s newspaper. From there, I entered the most transformative job in my entire life where I made a living out of hearing people’s stories and amplifying them through writing. In my work, my goals were to empower underrepresented voices who aren’t often not featured in the media. I also see every conversation as a learning opportunity, which means that I enter every interview with an open mind.
Read on to see some stories that I wrote over 4 years with The Daily, especially for the diversity beat. This work has taught me the importance of creating space for people to tell their story and amplify their strengths. I hope to keep doing this whether I work as a writer, but I also hope to understand people’s needs and translate them into design recommendations.
empowering underrepresented voices
“Black women who changed the world: faculty lecture celebrates black history,” THe Daily, May 3, 2019
Isabel de Olvera, the first known woman of African ancestry to settle in America. Rachel Noel, the first Black woman elected to public office in Colorado who fought for school desegregation. Carolyn Downs, a member of the Seattle Chapter’s Black Panther Party who fought tirelessly to meet the medical needs of Seattle's Black community. These are some Black women who changed the American West - and the world - but aren't often celebrated in history. Read on to learn about them and BlackPast.org, a 6,000-page reference center that documents the history of 1 billion people of African ancestry.
“Centering Native knowledge and ways of being,” THe DAILY, 2019
The UW situated on the land of the Duwamish and Coast Salish people, and institutions like UW have a responsibility to center the knowledge of Native communities in education. Duwamish. This event does that by sharing the work of 4 Native scholars and educators who shared their knowledge about building Native teacher education programs at the University of Oregon and the University of Arizona. The goal of the event was to continue the conversation about Native education, understand its challenges, and advocate for Native resurgence.
“The art of Black urbanism: Creating space to be seen,” The Daily, 2019
The UW Department of Urban Design & Planning recently hosted an event that featured a conversation between interdisciplinary storyteller Jessica Rycheal and post-doctoral fellow Dr. Matt Miller. They explored the complexity of Blackness, visibility, and the power of being authentic in a world that wasn't made for you.
“Department of American Indian Studies maintains roots in the Pacific Northwest and grows outward,” The Daily, 2018
This story focused on the Department of American Indian Studies and their focus on centering indigenous knowledge, particularly with the UW’s location on Duwamish land. This program enables students to explore representations of indigenous people in every discipline and tell their story of resilience.
The event “Finding Native Feminist Pleasure in Film: Indigenous Queens who Refuse to be Princesses” was part of a series hosted by the Intellectual House titled “Indigenous Feminisms,” which explored the complexity of gender identity and how it connects to the history of indigenous people while providing supportive programming to Native American students, faculty, and staff.
“An ode to cohabitation vows,” Silk Club, 2019.
“I need more than pride flags and rainbow pins to feel represented,” Var City & Self-published on Medium, 2018.
“Hate wins: The only way is forward,” The Daily, 2016.
STEM & TECH
“When being ‘selfish’ about using Microsoft products gets personal,” IT Showcase, 2018
For Cory Joseph, ensuring accessibility is personal. As a person with a visual impairment, Cory Joseph is committed to ensuring that Microsoft lives its mission to empower every single person on the planet, starting with its employees. He does this by holding developers and designers accountable to create inclusive and accessible products.
“Annual [Women in User Experience] Conference explores creative confidence, breaking barriers, and empowering users,” The Daily, 2018
In line with my mission of empowering womxn and underrepresented minorities in STEM, I covered the annual Women in User Experience Conference, which enabled attendees to learn from industry professionals and connect with others members of the UX community
“Investigating how learning to use a brain-computer interface impacts connectivity in the whole brain,” The Center for Neurotechnology, 2017
This piece summarized research on how proficient use of brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) can lead to changes in brain activity, and if changes due to learning how to use the BCI persist after the person is no longer actively engaged with the device.
“Expanded online database on aging, dementia, and traumatic brain injury,” The Daily, 2016
The article highlights the collaboration between the Allen Institute for Brain Science, UW Pathology and Internal Medicine, and Group Health that led to the expanded online resources on aging, dementia, and traumatic brain injury (TBI).
education & outreach
“Scholar Spotlight: Tommy LaGuardia,” Social Media and Adolescent Health Research Team, 2016
Many people are familiar with the linear path to become a doctor, lawyer, or engineer, but the path to a career in research is harder to quantify. Thanks to the Summer Scholars Program at the Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Scholar alumni and current high school senior Tommy LaGuardia identified his interest in research, which he hopes to pursue at Stanford.
“McNair Program provides holistic support for students interested in graduate studies,” The Daily, 2018
This article focused on a program that support students who are historically underrepresented in graduate programs. I talked about the importance of community and sharing their experiences in a safe space.