But I love Israel, and sharing that love has always been so important to me, so when my friend came back to me a few months later and told me that Stanford University was looking for an Israel Fellow at the last minute, I decided to apply. A month and a half later, I was settling into California life.
For me, Judaism is warmth. It is the warmth of a mazel tov on a happy occasion. It is the warmth of far too much food at every social gathering. It is the warmth of traveling away from home to college and having a constant, reliable base in the campus Hillel. And it is the warmth of hearing “welcome home” the moment you step foot in Israel.
While I may be wearing a surgical mask while interacting with my community, the smile underneath has never faded.
Over past two years, I’ve learned what it feels like to leave your home and everything in it at the spur of the moment, not knowing when you will come back – something my immigrant parents went through in their own childhoods.
When our student community sees themselves represented in leadership roles, they feel more safe, secure, and seen on campus.
The idea that two students from very different communities decided to run together and share the highest position in the student body raised many eyebrows on campus. Students were very skeptical it would work out, and I got comments daily questioning my decision
Bridge to Literacy renews my faith in the promise of a community founded on empathy-driven leadership and dynamic, one-on-one mentorship.
Out of context, grammar practice doesn’t sound like the most invigorating activity, but as mentor, co-founder, and co-executive director of Bridge to Literacy for the last two years, I have worked to unite 150+ mentors and students across six continents and 17 countries around their zeal for language and cultural connections.
I’m majoring in bioengineering. But I’m also in an academic program that combines Engineering, Business and Computer Science. It focuses a lot on the design and development of different products and that’s truly what I am interested in pursuing. So when I heard about the Tikkun Olam Makers (TOM) Fellowship, I thought: Wow, this truly aligns with my passions.
We thought, ‘What if we created an app to figure out what essentials people need in different communities?’ In 2018, my dad and I created the GoDonate app. Through GoDonate, we’re able to bring people together to donate the bare necessities, like medical supplies, clothes, and food.
I’ve wanted to be on ‘Jeopardy!’ since I was a little kid. My parents were like, ‘You seem to know a lot of these answers, so you should try out. I did well enough on the test to get an audition for the ‘Jeopardy! National College Championship.’ And then from there, it was like a dream coming true.
Family recipes, passed down from generation to generation, bring me closer to my Persian roots.
Growing up, I thought my Jewish and Japanese identities conflicted. When I was in a Jewish setting, there never seemed to be any Japanese people, and when I was in a Japanese setting, there never seemed to be any Jewish people. I felt in-between worlds. Then, I learned about the power of intersectionality.