March 13, 2014

Changemaker of the Week: Maya Finoh '17

by Swearer Center

In the last semester and a half, Maya Finoh '17 has taken Brown University's campus by storm. She has been an avid supporter of social change through her role in the Undergraduate Council of Students and planning the Converge for Change conference. She is also co-editor of OBSIDIAN, an online literary and visual space for people of the African diaspora. 

Q: What is your involvement in social change and how did it start?
A: With two other Brown students I co-founded OBSIDIAN magazine: an intersectional literary and visual arts space for people of the African diaspora at Brown. We couldn't find a Black creative space on campus, so we made one.

Q: What is the most important thing you've learned through your engagement with these issues?
A: Probably one of the most important things I've learned out of my experience with creating a new space is just how much I don't know. I've gotten so much advice and so many new perspectives from various people on this campus - it's amazing.

Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d give to any college student thinking of becoming a "changemaker"?
A: TAKE SPACE, MAKE SPACE. Never let fear keep you from saying or doing something you really want to. At the same time, you should always remain conscious of those voices/identities that easily get drowned out in conversation.

Q: What is your personal mission statement?
A: I want to never stop believing in the ***flawlessness of the people around me; I do everything for my parents, ancestors, and loved ones.

Q: What's one surprising fact people might not know about you?
A: Once upon a time, I wanted to be a barista and make new coffee flavors and cute little pastries all day.

If you know a Brown student or alum who is making a difference on campus, in Providence, or around the world, nominate them here to see them featured as Changemaker of the Week.