• _whatshesays

ZULEKA

Zuleka | Storyteller | Student | Fufu Enthusiast | Hobbies: Curating colorful Insta-stories, Dancing, Crafting | Currently in Virginia, but Liberia is Home


Instagram: @Zuleka_


1) THE BEST THING THAT HAPPENED TO YOU IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS?

I got accepted into the MPH program to simultaneously complete a master's with my Ph.D.! Public Health was always a field of interest, but after experiencing the Ebola outbreak in Liberia, I was driven more towards the discipline. As a Ph.D. student already, it was an additional challenge, but I applied anyway and got in! It felt like a long shot considering I was in a different program, but it all came together in the end 😊

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2) THE WORST THING THAT HAPPENED TO YOU IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS?

I lost my job right before the pandemic. I am a full-time graduate student, so funding was vital, but my job let me go on account that I will find something else. Covid-19 hit and it got increasingly difficult to find another opportunity. On top of every other difficulty happening in the last few months, being unemployed really crush my drive.

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3) YOUR BIGGEST WISH FOR THE NEAR FUTURE?

My biggest wish for the near future is that my platform will be used for more education and enlightenment of Africa and African culture. I hope to grow a community of people interested in learning about the continent and working towards tangible solutions to uplift the images of Africa and her people.

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4) YOUR BIGGEST WORRY FOR THE NEAR FUTURE?

That the trend of anti-racism will go away. People will forget the pain and sufferings of Black and Brown people and go back to ignoring or sweeping it under the rug. I worry it might be a phase, but I am still hopeful for a revolution.

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5) A CONTEMPORARY WOMAN YOU CURRENTLY ADMIRE?

My Sister, Dr. Kolu Baysah-Clark. She is the definition of shattering glass ceilings and getting out of boxes. She believes in hard work and is always willing to share with everyone around her. I’ve watched her work her way through every nursing profession to now earning a doctorate. The best part about her is she doesn’t even own her badassness!

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6) A ONE-SENTENCE MESSAGE TO OTHER WOMEN?

Sis, your body bleeds without cuts, hosts a whole person for months and you fart glitter; you are magic! Do not let anybody tell you otherwise.


A few more questions about the current situation (covid-19, lockdown, black lives matter protests, politics, finances, mental health, health, and so much more):


7) THE WORLD HAS BEEN CHANGING DRAMATICALLY IN RECENT MONTHS, HOW ARE YOU COPING?

It is important that I continue my routines. I try to stay hydrated and use a to-do list to stay on task. I also have a group of women that cheer each other on in a WhatsApp group. There are days where we only share memes or funny videos, but it keeps me going. There is no right way to deal with all the changes, but I have found that sharing with others makes it easier.

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8) WHICH CHANGE HAS AFFECTED YOU THE MOST / HAD THE BIGGEST IMPACT ON YOU PERSONALLY? 

Online learning was a huge change for me. I am old fashioned and rather in-person learning. As a student, I have such a hard time staying focus and lack the discipline to spent hours in front of my computer. It is such a struggle to do zoom meetings and staying focus. I will not say this is the biggest impact, but it really changes how I learn personally.

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9) WHAT ARE YOU CONCERNED ABOUT THE MOST?

I am concerned about the rush to go back to “normal”. The rush is only our capitalist society with no better option, pushing businesses and places to reopen. There are vulnerable and often disadvantaged people that will be forced to return to normal at a greater risk. I am very concern about this especially being in America. I am also concern about my home country Liberia and people ignoring the measures in places to fight the virus.

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