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Meet the DEI: Juliette Branker

Profiling the Mosaic Center's Diversity Educator Interns

The Diversity Educator Interns are a mix of six, talented undergraduate and graduate students who work to fulfill the Mosaic Center's mission and vision. The DEIs co-facilitate cross-cultural and diversity awareness discussions and educational workshops for UMBC student, staff and faculty groups by request. Want to know more or want the DEIs to present to your class or group? Contact mosaic@umbc.edu.

Q:  Tell me a little bit about yourself: Major? Hometown? Favorite animals? Random facts?


A: I am an Asian Studies major and a Korean minor, I may change to modern languages though. I was born in Baltimore but raised in Trinidad. I’m a new transfer from Penn State, PSU!  I like giraffes, mustaches, and hotdogs!


Q:     How did you learn about the Diversity Education Internship (DEI)? Did you know right away that you wanted to do it?

A: A friend of mine was working front desk in the Mosaic and she told me about the application and I jumped right on it, what better way to get to know a diverse group of people faster than working in the Mosaic Center?


Q: Have you volunteered in any other diversity positions before you started? How did you learn skills you needed to know for this internship?

A: I had many leadership roles at PSU before attending UMBC; I was President of the Black Student Union and VP of Rainbow Paws, our LGBTQA org, and a student mentor for high school students through a program called Talent Search. Also, the summer before my transfer, I was training to work as an Ethnic Outreach Coordinator in our LGBT office on campus at PSU.


Q: How many hours each week do you work in the OSL Mosaic Center? What do you do during that time?

A: We are required to devote 5 hours of time a week but it always ends being more because the office is so much fun. We spend a lot of time joking around but we take care of business too. I am on the marketing and outreach team with Andrea and we try our best to spread the word about the office and internship. We also facilitate discussions held here and those are always an enriching experience.


Q: What is the most difficult thing you have encountered so far into the internship? What is the most interesting thing you have encountered?

A: Personally, I feel the most difficult thing I have encountered is the use of sensory language. I have a pretty big mouth and always say what is on my mind so it can be difficult to just sit back and listen. I have to say that that is also the most interesting thing I have encountered because when I just listen I learn so much more about a person and the things around me I couldn’t identify myself.


Q: What would you say to other students inquiring about becoming the next generation of DEIs?

A: I would say if you know want to get to know, work, and meet great people then try to become an intern. Not just anyone can come in here and represent the office; you have to have good a work ethic, personality, and most of all, communication skills. You have to know how to communicate because understanding a diverse group of people requires an affinity comprehension.


Q: What are your plans/goals for after UMBC?

A: Graduate school of course because a bachelor’s degree will not take you as far as it used to. I would love to get my PhD in communication because I love conversing and the art of languages. I plan to work in the University system, either as a professor or in Student Life.

Posted: March 5, 2012, 2:31 PM