Written by Mira Celly.

What is your story?

I was born and raised in Louisiana but had to move around a lot because of Hurricane Katrina. We were lucky enough to leave the day before landfall. Although it was a horrible incident, I ended up in SoCal because of Hurricane Katrina and am now a proud SoCal girl at heart. I credit Hurricane Katrina in helping me get to where I am today – at a young age, I had to learn to work hard for what I wanted, which I have continued to do to get where I am today. I am a first generation college student raised by a single mother. If you had told me in high school that I’d be double majoring in Business Administration at the Haas School of Business and Media Studies at UC Berkeley, be on the board of HUBBA, and doing all of the things that I do, I wouldn’t have believed you. I credit my mother and how she raised me for my work ethic. Watching her work tirelessly so that my brother and I could have everything that we needed instilled a desire inside me to work hard so that I could provide for myself and for her one day. At a young age, I had to deal with my parents separating, Hurricane Katrina, and having to all live in one bedroom in California and although it may sound strange, I am thankful for all of these struggles.  Learning from these instances shaped me into the person  I am today and for that, I am thankful.

Who is one person you have a lot of respect for at Haas?

Professor Krystal Thomas. I’m taking Business 100 with her right now and she emulates everything that I want to be when I am older. She helps me see who I can be one day if I keep working toward my goals. It is inspiring to see her, a successful Black woman, working in entertainment, which is where I’d like to be one day. I have already learned so many life lessons that I can carry on into my career in just one semester with her! She carries herself with such poise and is truly a role model.

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