Turning Twenty: A Letter of Self-Discovery (February Blog)

Dear Me,

It’s the year 2023 now, and we’ve named it “the Year of Change and Transformation”. 2023, the year for me! You made, for the very first time, a vision board on Canva, and honestly, it came out much better than you could have anticipated! A colorful collage of all your dreams and goals for the new year illustrated in cutouts of cute cartoons and images taken from Google. Ranging from a letter that states “Congrats, you’re accepted!” to a flashy red car honking to the Scripture verse from the Prophet Habakkuk that reminds you to ‘write the vision down… so that one may easily read it’, these images capture what’s on your heart. 

If I hadn’t told you before, I’m proud of you, you know? You have truly come a long way, thanks be to the grace of God. Four years ago, at 20 years old,  did you know you were going to take the daring and bold step to transition to Nursing as your career choice? Bet you didn’t think that would happen, Miss I-Want-To-Be-A-Doctor-Since-The-Age-Of-Ten. Did you know you were going to attend Hunter, not having a clue about what you were doing, where you were going, but end up majoring in Human Biology and Sociology, and wind up loving them? Thank God for that advisor who told you that Human Biology was the best major for Hunter’s pre-Nursing students! You ended up loving your classes, and excelled in many of your classes like your Capstone Seminar, Microbiology, Nutrition, and Medical Sociology-kudos to you! Now, for Sociology I REALLY bet you NEVER thought you’d want to go into that field, right? Did you know that after the events that took place in the Summer of 2020, you became more interested in racial & criminal justice, which pushed you to venture into policy and criminology classes. It is interesting how when you joined more groups and met peers with fresh and new ideas, it awakened new passions you never knew you had! Right now, you are at a point where you know you want to go to Nursing school, but you also have such a huge interest in community organizing, food insecurity, prison justice and reform, public policy, student and youth activism- basically everything! You feel like you have a clear idea of what you want to do, but which avenue to take, that is the question. Do you take the traditional route and jump head-first into your career choice, or do you choose the “road less traveled by” as Robert Frost once penned down, and absorb all the experiences life can throw at you or gift to you instead? On top of that, you also have dreams of getting your Master’s in Public Health! Crazy, right? Who would have ever thought you wanted to go to graduate school, in hopes you could study health disparities to learn how to deliver better healthcare services to folks who look like you, communities that represent you. Hopefully you can go to CUNY (third time in a row, fingers crossed!) It feels scary but exciting, all these different pathways and new opportunities you’re trying out. You have been to Albany and Washington DC to advocate for the behalf of fellow students’ well-being, participated in life-changing internships and programs, made new friends, started your own advocacy project, met amazing mentors, leading your very own business, learning to appreciate your progress and simply having fun! If anyone hasn’t told you yet, I am proud of you and can’t wait to see the next steps for you!




Consciousness of the Heart (November Blog)






Dream.  I want to dream a better dream, 

greater than what was given to me.

Achieve. I strive to achieve a life where 

I will look back

and have no regrets. 

A simple life of joy, peace, pride and rest. 

Love. The inner child in me wants to love others in the same way

my Father up above loves me.

Yet, my heart secretly, earnestly, yearns for the kind of love that makes it skip a beat. 

Inspire. I want to inspire the ones coming after me, the girl who harbors her own seed of hope, patiently waiting to grow. 

Resurrect. I want to resurrect others’ dead dreams like how prophet Ezekiel resurrected the dry bones in the middle of the valley. 

Tired. I tire of seeing my people in the streets, beaten down, torn down,

humanity ripped and stripped away, 

with every crushing blow of the soldiers in blue

who swore to protect us, 

defend us. 


They actually never saw us. 

saw us as people, saw us as worthy.

I don’t want to survive, 

I just need to thrive.

But at home, we, in our own spaces, 

we beat each other, not with metal batons, 

but with daggers of vitriol,

rooted in colorism, featurism, tribalism

that proceed from our mouths. 

We are all different 

and yet one of the same.

We have been broken and remain whole

whether we eat jollof rice and fufu, jerk chicken, roti, or collard greens and candied yams, 

Again, I assure you 

we are one and the same. 

Why don’t you like me for who I am?

Why won’t you love me for who I’m not?

Look. I look forward to the day where death

can finally die,

and life will surely live. 

And when that day comes, 

my Father, my Maker will say,

“Welcome home, My good and faithful servant,

Well done.”

Participating in the Young Invincibles Advocacy Organization

Young Invincibles is a youth-focused advocacy organization that is centered on encouraging young people about finding their voices, and using their talents and abilities to tackle issues in the political realm that impact them every day, such as higher education, economic justice, politics, public policy, health insurance, and others. We do this through building a community of young leaders who take action for social change, sharing the stories of young adults, exploring cutting-edge policy research and analysis, providing tools for our generation to make smart economic choices, and encouraging mission-driven social enterprise ventures. YI is headquartered in Washington DC, and has branches in California, Colorado, and New York. They have a special Young Advocates program that employs a group of Advocates between the ages of 18 and 34 in the Fall and Spring semesters every year, where they develop skills and gain experience in the core functions of advocacy and public policy work, as well as building their overall professional skills. The program includes Advocates overseeing on-the-ground community engagement, such as planning state and local events to educate and facilitate discussions on pressing issues affecting our generation.

For the August 11th conference, I was selected by my supervisors and top staff at the New York Young Invincibles program to represent the NY YI program at the “Raising The Bar” Summit to be hosted by the Department of Education. I would represent New York, while 2 other YI participants would represent California and Colorado respectively. We were to speak before almost 50 college presidents and administrators, from the student leader perspective, on how they could best support student welfare and basic needs. We spoke on a panel about advocacy efforts that we each contributed to in our home states and advised the audience (college administrators from all over the country and Department of Education staff and officials) on how they can work with their students to enact broader-reaching change that goes beyond their campuses. They wanted student activists who worked on campus-based basic needs efforts, and state/systemwide policy change — which I was happy to have done. 

Participating in student government in the 2021-22 school year as an elected official, interning at Hunter’s NYPIRG (New York Public Interest Research Group) chapter, and serving as a Young Advocate at Young Invincibles (amongst other activities) have all molded me into the activist/leader I envision myself to be today. I testified before the City Council Higher Education Committee about the needed funding, expansion, and implementation of Single Stop, a program that helps students access nutrition benefits, health insurance, legal and financial services, and tax preparation assistance at CUNY schools. Currently it exists at all CUNY community colleges and a select few senior colleges. I also traveled to Albany and spoke to elected officials (Senators and Assembly members) on the importance for passing the New Deal for CUNY Bill, testified before elected officials virtually for Higher Education Action Week, and helped lead a group-led campaign in my Young Advocates program, testifying and vouching for the banning of college transcript withholding in NY. It was a huge honor to be a part of these victories and movements, and I spoke about them with Summit audience members. At the end, I received a great applause!