The new school year has started and there are some new faces at the Women’s Center. I wanted to introduce the new Women’s Center Ambassadors for this school year and some fun facts about them.
First I will introduce myself, my name is Bianca Ortiz and I am the new Graduate Assistant at the Women’s Center. I came to Grand Valley State University at the end of July of this year and its been such a ride. I hail from Los Angeles, California, and this is my first time living in Michigan. I completed my undergrad at UC Santa Barbara, where I majored in Feminist Studies and English with an emphasis in Environmental Literature. I am beyond thrilled to have received a position within the Women’s Center and even more excited to be a co-advisor for the Ambassador Program. I am 23 years old and the middle child; I have an older brother, who is 25, and a younger sister, who is 19. I am also a student of Grand Valley. I am in the Higher Education Master’s Program with an emphasis in College Student Affairs Leadership. I love the beach and dogs, especially puppies, I have two back home and I am more than happy to share photos. I also identify as a Latina woman, I am half Mexican and half Salvadorean. These are just a few things about me, but as the year progresses you will learn more about me and if you have any questions feel free to ask. In the next paragraph are a few short introductions from the new ambassadors:
My name is Nika Kusmierz. I am a senior studying sociology and want to eventually pursue a career in social work. I became involved with the Women’s Center Ambassadors because of my recent trip to South Africa this summer with the Women and Gender Studies Program. I wanted to find a way to spread the word about the importance of equality and many other gender justice issues and I know this is the perfect place for it. I am very excited to be apart of this wonderful group of women and can’t wait to see what the future has in store for our amazing group of young feminist leaders!!
Hi! I’m Brittany Vernon from Troy, MI. I’m an undergraduate student at Grand Valley State University, currently undeclared, hopefully seeking a major in Education. I enjoy singing alot; I’m in two choral groups on campus and love every bit of it! I also love the feeling of volunteering and knowing that I made an impact on someones’ life, even if it was in the smallest way.
Hi my name is Clementina Asamoah and I’m a sophomore at Grand Valley State University studying Pre-Med. I’m from Waterford, Michigan but I originally grew up in Verona, Italy. I love to bake, read, and spend time with family and friends. I also love to volunteer, and I hope to be a neonatologist in the future.
Rya Northrop. Junior. History Major.
I wanted to become a Women’s Center Ambassador because I have a desire to help the women of GVSU feel comfortable with who they are. I will do everything I can to be a good example of a proud and confident women so that others can see that it isn’t something to be scared of. I have a strong feminist voice and am ready to let it soar. I beleive that everyone should have equal rights to live their lives and enjoy everything this world has to offer.
My name is Danielle Meirow and I am excited to be an ambassador for the Women’s Center this year! I was originally encouraged to apply by Brittany Dernberger after studying abroad with her during the Women and Gender Studies South Africa trip this summer. The reason I decided to apply, however, is because I believe it is important to give back to and aid your community and this was a great opportunity to do so while also gaining valuable contacts and leadership experience. I am also working to give back to my community in other ways including serving as a Student Senator, guiding freshmen residents as a Resident Asistant, developing leadership skills in my peers as the Vice President of Leadership Decelopment for Sigma Alpha Lamda Honors Society, and campaigning for candidates who protect my rights as an intern at Planned Parenthood. This is my third year at Grand Valley State University and I am a double major in Biomedical Sciences and Women and Gender Studies, as well as a minor in Chemistry. I look forward to posting things on the blog this year and hope you find my posts worthwhile!
My name is Jessica Wehby and I am a junior Women and Gender Studies major with a Spanish minor. I am involved in many things here on campus along with the Women’s Center Ambassador program—I serve on the executive board for Lions Club and Amnesty International and am the Sexual Assault Awareness Week co-chair for Eyes Wide Open. I chose to be a part of the Women’s Center Ambassador program because I have gotten so much good out of the Women’s Center that I felt it was time to give back to the place that I love so much. I am thrilled to be a part of this organization!
My name is Julia Raap and I am a junior dual majoring in Women and Gender Studies and Psychology. This will be my second year being a Women’s Center Ambassador and I am looking forward to another amazing year of service learning, activism, and feminist leadership! I grew up in a very small and conservative town and this program has given me the courage to be able to speak my mind and find what it is that I am truly passionate for while making a difference in the community. I am also lucky enough to be a resident in the Women’s Leadership House on campus during its first year and also am a member of the Nerdfighters club. The Women’s Center at GVSU has become my second family and I cannot wait to share this experience with all of you!
Hi, my name is Liz Josey. I’m a finishing up my undergraduate degree at Grand Valley State University. I study Psychology, but I am also very passionate about Women and Gender Studies, as well as Sociology. Along with taking classes, I spend a lot of my time co-parenting two kittens, spending time with friends, and working as a hostess at Cracker Barrel Old Country Stores. I enjoy reading and watching a good movie or TV show when I have time. I am currently reading To Be Real edited by Rebecca Walker and Most Good, Least Harm by Zoe Weil. I love learning about and understanding new perspectives and the factors that contribute to peoples differing world views. I am willing to share my perspective on topics of interest and love when people give me constructive criticism to challenge and potentially shift my perspective.
I’m Dionna and I am from Detroit, MI. There are several reasons why I am involved with Grand Valley’s Women’s Center. Besides being a student worker, I am an ambassador, the education chair for That Takes Ovaries, and an active member of the volunteer opportunities that they offer. I am more of a radical feminist because I truly believe that you can not “Dismantle the master’s house, with the master’s tools”.
My name is Laura Gibson and I’m from Detroit, MI. I am a senior at Grand Valley State University studying Art History/Anthropology. I hope to one day become a museum curator or possibly open up my own art gallery. My dream is to go to Italy and study there. I LOVE kids, music and chocolate. I have been involved with the Women’s Center by volunteering, which started my sophomore year through the Volunteer Corps and loved every minute of it. I have been around strong and empowering women who have had a great influence on my life. Now that I am an Ambassador, I wish to do the same not only at GV, but everywhere I go.
Hi! I’m Haley Chapman. I am a senior at Grand Valley State University. I am finishing up my Psychology major with minors in Criminal Justice and Sociology. I hope to use my education to work within the prison system to lessen the injustices that inmates face in the system and once they are released. This is my second year as a Women’s Center Ambassador and I couldn’t be happier to return. I am also involved in Psi Chi, the International Honor Society for Psychology on our campus. I look forward to being a feminist leader on campus and to inspiring younger women to take charge of their lives. My favorite moment as an Ambassador is taking large groups of advocates into the community and really making a difference!