What is your story? What doesn't your resume tell us about you?
Ever since I was little, I have had this spark inside of me to make change happen. My parents and family have always supported me and have always told me I could accomplish anything I set my mind to. But still, this spark felt naive because I knew most people perceived it as such. I've also always been sensitive and that has generally been reflected back to me (by society) as a weakness. Now that I'm older, I realize the productive ways in which to use my sensitivity and I consider it one of my greatest strengths. This awareness has allowed me to have a relatively high level of emotional intelligence, to be able to relate to nearly anyone, and to remain calm when things hit the fan. I believe this empathy between human beings is what is necessary to solve the current problems we are facing. Global collaboration and sharing of perspectives must happen to solve problems bigger than ones we've ever faced as a human race. Learning about climate change and the resulting social injustices in recent years has without a doubt reignited that spark inside of me, but this time I won't let my fears keep it inside of me. I plan to be a part of the solution.
How do you want to leave your impact on the world?
I hope to lead by example in living the life that is right for me on my path, and to inspire others to walk their own path. That could be a really loaded statement depending on who you are and what you enjoy, but at the root of it for myself it means choosing love (for yourself and others) when you make decisions and not choosing fear. Too often we let fear restrict us to our comfort zones - I'd like to do more expanding of my own comfort zone and invite others to join me.
Describe a personal experience that has directly or indirectly influenced your career path.
This past December, I had the opportunity to attend Club de Madrid and P80 Foundation’s 2016 Global Solutions Summit. I was one of seven interns serving in a support role for the conference organizers and we were the only undergraduate students in attendance. I knew I was fortunate to even have this opportunity going in to this experience, but I did not know what affect it would have on me. I ended up witnessing a group of inspiring people gathered at that conference to share resources, ideas, and plans to change the world regardless of policies. The personal lessons I learned here were very timely. Given my near graduation date and job search, I then had a renewed sense of determination to not settle for a career that might pay the bills but does not fulfill my need to serve humanity in the best ways that I can. I still carry this determination with me and I plan to throughout my career.
Given my near graduation date and job search, I then had a renewed sense of determination to not settle for a career that might pay the bills but does not fulfill my need to serve humanity in the best ways that I can.
What is the biggest take-away and/or favorite part of your GREEN Program experience?
I like to refer to my GREEN Program experience as my first "comfort zone dropkick". I had never been out of the country, flown on a plane, or even driven through more than a few states, and I felt more myself than I had ever felt being in a new country surrounded by people I had never met before. Now that I know that feeling and how much personal growth it facilitates, I will be drop-kicking my comfort zone throughout the rest of my life. The GREEN Program was also the first time I ever felt like I was in a group of like-minded people, which ignited the embers deep down to just go ahead and try to change the world for the better.
What skills or knowledge did you gain or improve through your experience on The GREEN Program?
Critical Systems Thinking, Cross Disciplinary Communication and Collaboration Skills, Public Speaking, Confidence and Self-Awareness, Entrepreneurship, Innovation