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Aaron True

Hometown: Hyattsville, MD
High School: St. John’s College High School
Intended Major: Spanish and Sociology/Anthropology
Possible Career: Human Rights Lawyer, Social Worker

5 Words: Passionate. Intentional. Activist. Stylish. 

What impact do you want to have on the world?

I want to further queer, feminist and anti-racist practices and policies through research and community programming. I am particularly interested in issues of nationalism and international social change surrounding workers rights and economic justice. 

Name a person you admire.

I admire my mom. She started working at a labor union immediately after graduating from high school and has worked her way up to union leadership. She did so in an incredibly masculine environment. She's a strong women who taught me how to stand up for myself and create space for others in environments that tell us we're not worthy. 

What is something you are proud of in your life so far?

I am most proud of getting into Swarthmore. I am the first member of my family to go to College, and being at Swarthmore means so much to me and to my family. When I think of the sacrifices that my parents have made to allow me to be here, I am pushed to do better in class, to gain the most out of these four years as I can. Getting the Philip Evans Scholarship on top of going to Swarthmore not only validates that work, but allows me to get even more out of this experience than I could have ever imagined. 

What have been the most valuable Evans Scholars program experiences for you?

In the Summer of 2014 I lived for two months in Quito, Ecuador and worked in a social services clinic for child abuse cases. I interacted first hand with Social Workers, Lawyers and Psychologists as we took in cases. I was responsible for the intake of cases, and assisted clients as they submitted formal complaints and reports. It was incredibly difficult work, and was done in Spanish. Living abroad taught me flexibility and working at this office taught me perseverance. 

 In the Summer of 2016 I worked at the AFL-CIO's department for Civil, Human and Women's Rights in Washington, DC. I was working to shape Labor's vision of Mass Incarceration and campaigned to end predatory institutions and practices such as private prisons, disenfranchisement, and the school-to-prison pipeline. This process inspired me to look for jobs in or related to the labor and the progressive movement. I saw first hand the powerful changes that can take place when people of color, women and queer people are given the power and space to make decisions of institutional policy. I learned responsible ways to deploy privilege in order to create space for those with other marginalized identities. 

What were some of the most important classes you’ve had at Swarthmore?

Sociology of the US Labor Movement and Urban Crime and Punishment, both in the Sociology department, were two of the most transformative classes I've taken.