Can you start by telling us a little about yourself?
I’m an English major and Human Rights minor at the University of Connecticut. I have a concentration in Creative Writing and I’m currently agonizing over my Honors thesis that is due this December! I’m passionate about women’s and LGBTQ rights and decreasing the stigma surrounding mental illness and reproductive choice.
One of the ways we are able to organize others in the fight for reproductive freedom is to tell them why we are in this fight. What motivates you?
I strongly believe that regulating someone’s pregnancy is a fundamental violation of bodily autonomy. Every person should have full control over their own bodies. 1 in 4 women will have an abortion by age 45. That probably means that everyone has at least one woman in their life who’s had an abortion. I think it’s very important to support these women by decreasing the stigma surrounding their choices and making people feel that it’s okay to talk openly about their experiences if they want to.
Who is someone that inspires you in the work you do?
I recently took a class on Toni Morrison and am in awe of her work both as a writer and advocate. She writes primarily on the experiences of African American women. While her most famous work is Beloved, which earned her the Pulitzer Prize, I recommend that everyone read Sula, a look into the choices African American women have in life. When Sula is told by her grandmother that she needs to settle down and have some kids, she responds “I don’t want to make somebody else. I want to make myself.” I think about this line a lot and how important it is to me to make myself into the person I want to be and into a person who is doing important work.
What are some of your favorite things to do outside of work and school?
I really love the outdoors and gardening. I work at a garden center so I’m learning more and more about plants every week. I like to walk my dog in cute little centers of town go out for coffee or food with friends.
Where do you imagine yourself in 10 years?
I have no idea! I try to stay grounded by focusing on my immediate goals, which are graduating in a year’s time and finding a job preferably in some field of advocacy in which I’ll feel like I’m making a tangible difference in disenfranchised lives.
Anything else you would like to share?
The love of my life is my dog Betty who is four years old. She’s a Beagle and Boston terrier mix and is the most high-strung ball of energy you’ll ever meet.