Your name: Imani Brooks
Your home town: South Boston, Virginia
Your major(s): International Relations
Are you fluent in any language(s) other than English? No
What are your career plans? Pursue a law career and go into non-profit work to advocate for global health issues, human rights and racial justice
What is your favorite book or author and why? My favorite book is Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. It is the most recommended book by me to my friends. I love how Adichie centered on a Nigerian female main character to tell a powerful story about race and identity in America. As the main character developed a better understanding of herself, I, as the reader, was able to grow too.
What is your favorite word? My favorite word is “faith” because that is what my name means in Swahili. That word also drives everything I do because you have to faith in your abilities and aspirations to do your best.
Describe a significant breakthrough in your development as a writer: My first freelancing assignment was a significant breakthrough in my development as a writer because it served as a confidence booster. I worked with editors at The Independent UK on an article about Michelle Obama and her impact on me as an African-American girl. It was a nerve wracking experience at first to send my pitch without any prior experience and then to work with editors. My writing felt very vulnerable plus I knew that not all readers would be fans of the Obamas. Nevertheless, the topic was important to me so I persevered. I learned to ask tons of questions in the editing process and to advocate for my writing so that the message I wanted was portrayed correctly. After a couple of weeks, a great article was posted online. I am very grateful to The Independent UK for the unique opportunity to build upon my writing skills.