Aerin Malana

1: Square photo with light purple background. Top right corner text reads "GEN1 presents: Humans of GEN1" in dark purple. Title "an interview with Aerin Malana" is in white in the top left corner. A picture of Aerin smiling is centered in the photo. Subtitle "2020-21 & 2021-22 gen1 chair" is in white in the bottom right corner. 2: Square photo with light purple background. Title "can you introduce yourself and your role in the allen school?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "I’m Aerin Malana (she/they), a senior majoring in Computer Science and minoring in Diversity and Labor Studies! I’ve been a student at the Allen School since Fall 2018 and I currently act as Chair of GEN1. I’m also a teaching assistant for CSE 142!" is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 3: Square photo with light purple background. Title "what made you want to study computer science at the allen school?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "I was drawn to computer science by way of all the things that makes it unique: it’s a great blend of technical problem solving and algorithmic thinking, but it also requires some creativity and good communication skills. These all touched on my strengths I had identified in myself while in high school, plus UW is only 40 minutes away from home so the Allen School was perfect in that sense." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 4: Square photo with light purple background. Title "how did being a first-gen student affect your journey during undergrad?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "I think I was just made very aware of how I, like many first-gen students, didn’t have much knowledge about the ins and outs of this institution. It’s a feeling that lingers for a while, being someone with marginalized identities and knowing a PWI like UW and the Allen School were not created with a person like me in mind. I really relied on my communities and the advisors I felt close to to get me through my undergrad years." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 5: Square photo with light purple background. Title "what do you think is not talked about enough in the first-gen community?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "Just how much depth there is in the community – being first-gen is an identity many of us hold, but in conjunction with other marginalized identities. Experiences are vastly different between first-gen students and non-first-gen students. But even within the first-gen community, there are vastly different experiences that we face, especially when we consider other intersecting marginalized identities." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 6: Square photo with light purple background. Title "what advice would you give your younger self, the first year you came into the allen school?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "Finding community, those who can hold you with love and support and who you can do the same to in return, will make you feel whole. It’ll give meaning to the experiences you have and will provide you drive and reason to continue doing what you’re doing. Find the people that make you feel whole." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 7: Square photo with light purple background. Title "what was the hardest decision you ever had to make during your time at the allen school?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "I think the hardest decision I’ve had to make was to put myself and what I wanted to prioritize in my life first. For the past years of my life, my main priorities have been to always put academics first and to try and conform to what was expected of me. At some point, I just realized that college is the time to explore your interests and do what makes you happy and fulfilled. It wasn’t an automatic switch that I made, even in my last quarter, I constantly have to tell myself to make space for myself, for my interests, and my community." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 8: Square photo with light purple background. Title "who would you say is your biggest inspiration for your drive?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "The people closest to my heart – my community! I do what I do for my people to make them proud and to hold them in love." is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background. 9: Square photo with light purple background. Title "what's your favorite song?" is in white in the top left corner. Body text "Right now, my favorite song is Attracted to You by PinkPantheress. My favorite song of all time is I Only Have Eyes for You by The Flamingos. " is in purple and centered in the photo in front of a white paper background.