Kaleabe Teferi

 

What is your name, year in school, and area of study? What are your preferred gender pronouns?

Kaleabe Teferi, senior, accounting and information systems; he/him.

Why did you decide to pursue your major?

I wanted to learn about business, and being that accounting is the language of business, it seemed like a perfect fit. With the integration of technology in business, I decided to include information systems as well.

Do you experience microaggressions from professors or students because of your identity? If so, can you describe an instance? What would you like others to learn from it?

I think that being a minority on campus, [microaggressions] are feelings that you experience, especially being in a major that is dominated by one race. The times I feel [microaggressions] the most are when we are discussing areas like Africa and [those who are not of African descent] don’t filter their comments on a place I grew up in.

Do you think your gender plays a role in how you are treated on campus or in the classroom?

No.

Do you receive support in those situations? If not, then what kind of support do you wish were offered?

Yes. We tend to build a community as minorities and I feel like we have to help each other out because we are experiencing the same things.

In what ways do you think the UW lacks diversity or community for Black students? What changes would you like to see?

Two things that UW can do is do more outreach recruiting for diverse students and, when those students do come to the UW, offer them assistance so that they can succeed.

What are your thoughts on this year’s presidential election?

Bullshit! The fact that we elected someone that has, in the matter of over a year, offended everyone but white males, serves as an indication that we have not come as far as we think. [Donald Trump] clearly does not know what he is doing and will take America in a direction that is full of instability and fear.

How do you stay true to yourself when faced with adversities related to your gender or race?

You should be yourself and know your self-worth. We must keep in mind [that] if we let these adversities get to us, then we let the perpetrators win, which is never an option.

If you had the chance to tell all white people something, what would you say?

Be open minded and sensitive to other people's experiences and cultures. Take those interactions with colored people as an opportunity to broaden your perspective.

If you had the chance to give advice to a young Black child, what would you tell them?

You have a tough road ahead you. There will be a lot of obstacles that you will face and [you] will not have certain opportunities that might be readily available to others. What you must realize is that a lot of people have faced odds and have went on to achieve great things. Follow [their] lead.