Boricua Introduction

Hey everyone!

My name’s Aida and I’m currently a junior, double-concentrating in Comparative Literature (translation track; English/Spanish) and Gender & Sexuality Studies (though my transcript still says International Relations: Politics, Culture, and Identity track). I’m from Puerto Rico, but this summer I’ll be staying in Providence, which is exciting because I’ve just spent all the past summers back home. Speaking of home, over winter break, my friends and I went hiking in El Yunque, the only rainforest in the U.S. and one of the finalists for the new 7 Wonders of the Natural World. It was AWESOME. The last time I’d visited, I’d hiked, sure, but I hadn’t checked out any of the waterfalls. This time, we hiked higher peaks, spent longer in the forest, and actually went into one of the waterfalls. It was fantastic.

Anyway, this summer I’ll be in good ol’ PVD and I’m searching for  a) sublets and b) jobs and/or internships. I’m looking into various sublets, and I’m sure something will pan out, so it’s the least of my worries for now. Re: jobs, I already sort of have a gig working on translating/revising Getting Bi: Voices from Bisexuals Around the World by Robyn Ochs. I also think I’ll be continuing to volunteer at Progreso Latino in Central Falls (I do translation for a Brown research study about nutrition and eating habits). I was thinking of applying as an intern at The Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence and/or applying to be a patient escort (assisting 2to1: The Coalition to Preserve Choice at the Women’s Medical Center in helping patients enter the building with the least amount of harassment from protestors).

I should actually get some sort of, y’know, PAYING JOB though. We’ll see how that works out. The cool thing is that Brown offers internship aid for people like me who somehow end up working on stuff that doesn’t pay much, if at all, so I should apply to that ASAP. Brown’s Office of Financial Aid also has a listing of on-campus and certain off-campus jobs throughout the year, and they have a “summer” category, which is very helpful.

And speaking of work/volunteering, as is the custom, I’ll list what groups I’m involved with and what I’m doing with my life right now:

  • 5 classes: (Introduction to Literary Translation; Poetry, Art, and Beauty; Sexual Identity and International Exchange; Fantastic and Existentialist Literatures of Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil; & Feminist Theory/Feminist Activism)
  • Chair of SHEEC, the Sexual Health Education and Empowerment Council (and, by extension, coordinator for Sex Week 2010, March 14th-March 20th). This is my biggest project. I’m pumped and already stressed. We recently held KinkForAll Providence and co-sponsored “Get Your Heart On: A Sex Educator Showdown.” If you couldn’t tell already, I have a huge passion for sexual health and advocacy work. 😀
  • As far as the Queer Alliance goes, I’m Head Chair of its Coordinating Committee, a member of GenderAction (and thus a member of the Gender Neutral Housing and Bathrooms Committee), and subgroup leader for the Queer Community Committee (which is kind of dead, but…we’re seeing if we can give it life in a new way?). I am also the Brown liaison for the IvyQ conference, an annual inter-Ivy conference for LGBTQ students and their allies. The first one was held this past weekend at UPenn and it was awesome.
  • Member of Zeta Delta Xi, a co-ed fraternity
  • Volunteer at the Sarah Doyle Women’s Center (2 hours a week) and the LGBTQ Resource Center (2 hours a week, at least, but usually more)
  • Contributor at GenderAgenda
  • BUAC (Brown Undergraduate Activities Council): Secretary and also the Service, Political, and Social Action Groups Representative
  • Translator at Progreso Latino in Central Falls (I go there once a week, more or less)

In the past, I’ve been involved with: Caribbean Heritage Week, The Giving Tree Project (gift-drive through the Third World Center), CityGirls (a mentoring program), Femsex (the Female Sexuality Workshop), BUAD (Building Understanding Across Differences, an orientation program), The Next Thing (the TWC’s queer group), Our Spring Break (an anti-war initiative/set of marches), Transcending Boundaries Conference, and various other Queer Alliance groups (including Girl’s Night Out and the Dance Committee, which plans SexPowerGod and Starf*ck).

So if any of those things seem interesting to you, let me know! 🙂 I’d love to talk more about them.

For now, I’m signing off. I have to do work, deal with writing my resume, and organize a bunch of things related to IvyQ and Sex Week.

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About Aida Manduley

I'm an award-winning activist and presenter known for big earrings and building bridges. My perspective is one that focuses on intersectionality and maximizing kindness in the world. I'm trained as a sexuality educator, social worker, and nonprofit management professional. In short, this boricua is trying to make the world a better place using many strategies. And spreadsheets. Lots and lots of spreadsheets.
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