Fourth-Year Animation Major and Philosophy Minor
How/Why I Got Involved With Impact:
I first learned about Impact when it was suggested to me as a potentially fun spring break alternative. I was skeptical about it because I had never done any service work before and I didn’t know much about issues surrounding social justice either. I decided to give it a shot anyway and became a participant on the Youth Empowerment trip in Greenville, South Carolina. The experience completely changed my perspective on service work and definitely helped me discover myself. I realized that I was not as powerless as I thought, but rather that all the power I needed to bring positive change to my community was already inside of me. I got involved with Impact because of this – you get to go witness the beauty of different communities and learn how to help people in difficult situations while expanding your own perspective on the world with fellow classmates who end up being close friends by the end of the trip. It’s pretty dope.
Why LGBTQ+ Awareness and Advocacy:
I am motivated by the injustices I witness both around the world and within my community when it comes to LGBTQ issues. As a queer black woman myself, I’ve experienced the prejudice and lack of understanding that can arise from the lack of awareness and advocacy for the LGBTQ community. Facts -- like the majority of homeless youth being LGBTQ, or the life-expectancy of the average trans black woman 35 due to the amount of violence perpetrated against them -- are why I am interested in my trip focus. I truly believe that advocacy and awareness of the LGBTQ community is essential to stopping these injustices and bringing about understanding and love. I also want to gain more knowledge of the LGBTQ community to cultivate better representation within the media when I become a full-fledged Animator. I am very excited to explore both the various aspects of the LGBTQ community and learn about how to empower those within this community for the better of the world.
I am also a LGBT Resource Center Ambassador here at UGA! Come check us out at Memorial Hall!
Third-Year Entertainment and Media Studies & Film Studies Minor
How I Got Involved with IMPACT:
I had heard about the IMPACT program through a few friends that had gone on trips years prior, and they had nothing but great things to say about the program. I knew I wanted to explore and do something over my first-year of college spring break, so I decided to try IMPACT out. I spent this break in Memphis, TN, on a HIV/AIDS IMPACT trip and had the BEST time. I discovered how intersectional all social justice foci are and how I can be a better advocate and ally for my fellow community members. Because of that, I decided to stay with the program and am now leading my second IMPACT trip!
Why LGBTQ+ Awareness and Advocacy?
This particular focus lies near and dear to my heart. I’ve been surrounded by queer people my entire life (My brother is queer and has been with his partner for TEN years!) and have never quite understood why equal rights were such a struggle for our community. At first apprehensive to lead a trip that I am so closely affiliated with, I saw this as an opportunity to educate myself on queer topics I am not as familiar with. I wanted to become a better ally for all transgender, agender, and non-binary people, as well as other members of the community that are too often looked over. I’m hoping that this knowledge can translate to the films I create -- hopefully one day we’ll see this type of representation both on screen and behind the camera.
During my freshman year of college, I was walking to Snelling when it started to downpour. I was so drenched by the time I got there that Ms. Nancy gave me a towel to dry off :')