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AynNichelle Slappy

AynNichelle Slappy '20

High School: Marshall High School 

Intended Major: Black Womanhood

Possible Career: Librarian

Words: Outspoken, adaptive, compassionate

What impact do you want to have on the world?

My dream in life is to empower black girls. I want to show black girls that they are just as capable as others in spite of widespread messages meant to diminish their accomplishments and existence. I want to give black girls the confidence, knowledge, and resources necessary to making them feel unbound by the stereotypes that exist to make their options seem slim. I want to create spaces where black girls feel free to explore their gifts without limitations. I want to help black girls understand that their potential is infinite. 

Name a person you admire.

 I admire my mother and my grandmother. Throughout my life, they have been the only dependable role models I have had. My mother raised me and my 4 siblings by herself. She exemplifies resilience, honesty, individuality, compassion, and excellence, which are all attributes I aspire towards everyday. My grandmother was a Black Panther, and growing up she taught me that I can do and be whatever I wanted. Without her faith in me, I wouldn't be the woman I am today. I hope that I can live her dreams through my own successes.

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

Im proud of my accomplishments as a big sister. This is the first, and most important leadership role I will ever hold in life. As the oldest of a single parent, my siblings often look to me for guidance. The pressures of this responsibility has molded me into the strong leader that I am. They have shown me how to lead with understanding, how to learn from my mistakes, and how to come back for more after a challenge. My siblings have always pushed me forward, and I hope that following that following a path of righteousness, love, and truth will encourage them to live their lives similarly.

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

One of the most valuable experiences I've received as an Evans scholar was living in Parrish, and seeing Stephanie, one of the advisors I've acquired through Evans, almost every day. During my freshman year whenever I wasn't feeling well, I knew I could go to her for advice and support. At times where I felt like people on campus weren't understanding me or treating me well, I always knew Stephanie would lend her time to making me feel supported. 

What was the most transformative class you have taken and/or what subjects do you want to explore deeply?

The most transformative class I've taken here is Black Political Thought. It was the first political science class I've taken, and I really enjoyed reading political theorists who shared some of my experiences and thoughts about the world. The class encouraged me to imagine myself in any field, doing the work that I love. It taught me that the "black perspective" is not an inferior one, but an alternative one. I now feel more confident speaking out about issues that affect me in any academic setting.