Here’s some of the most recent stuff I’ve been working on. Feel free to reach out if you’d like to talk about any of this!
I am heavily invested in pushing for evidence-based decisions in policy-making and having conversations with the general public about why science matters.
Through the Science Policy Group at Berkeley, I helped start and currently lead STEMVotes, an effort to improve voter turnout by students in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM). Through our social media campaign (#stemvotes), we have provided advocacy resources for fellow students and reminded them of upcoming voter deadlines. In 2018, we hosted a voter information night with almost a hundred attendees and crashed (many) departmental happy hours to register students to vote. In the future, we hope to start a competition between campuses for getting the greatest number of voters!
As a team leader within Bay Area Scientists in Schools, I designed and taught hands-on lessons on the water cycle to dozens of elementary school students. In the past, I’ve shared my own research and fieldwork anecdotes at events such as the California Academy of Sciences NightLife and Grounds for Science! I’ve also mentored fellow students in STEM both informally and formally through programs such as the Bay Area Graduate Pathways to STEM.
As a counselor at the Crisis Support Services of Alameda County, I listen to and empathize with callers in distress, assess them for risk of suicide, collaborate with callers to de-escalate high-risk situations, and bridge connections to long-term care. I was drawn to this work because of a personal interest in promoting mental wellness, preventing suicide, and de-stigmatizing mental illness. This work opened my eyes to the extremes of suffering and compassion and has been both immensely challenging and rewarding. It’s helped me develop my active listening skills and mindfulness, which are two abilities I depend on every day.
Effective altruism is a social and philosophical movement that asks how we can use our talent, time, and money to most benefit others. This mindset of thinking critically about what it means to “do good” has inspired me donate a portion of my income to highly impactful charities each year. It’s simply one of the most efficient ways for me to have a net positive impact with the resources I have. In fact, one of my proudest accomplishments is running a marathon to raise $3,600 for the Against Malaria Foundation, a nonprofit that distributes insecticide-treated bed nets to people in need. I try to be transparent about my charitable contributions to encourage others to donate as well. Previously, I was a member of the Effective Altruists of Berkeley, which educated students on promising giving opportunities and hosted lectures by ethicists and nonprofit leaders.