Alumni

  • TIME 2024 WOMEN OF THE YEAR: The Poet Whose Writing Will Be Launched Into Space

    Ada Limón is no stranger to good news. In 2022, she was appointed the 24th poet laureate of the U.S. Last spring, she was granted a two-year second term. And in October came the announcement that she’d won a MacArthur “genius” grant. Ada Limón, UW School of Drama alumna, is featured.

    02/21/2024 | TIME
  • Mentorship for Black Professionals, Earbuds Not Included

    Identity Unboxed, a podcast created by alums Tiana Cole and Brad Blackburn III, explores the experiences of Black professionals in the Seattle area.

    February 2024 Perspectives
  • How a Millennial Estée Lauder Built a Widely Popular Beauty Brand

    To build a brand—and to fill a room—Ms. Bodnar has played not on her name but on consumers’ desire to do good with their dollars and belong to something bigger than… well, beauty. Call her the Estée Lauder that hustle culture built. Karissa Bodnar, School of Art alumni, is featured.

    The New York Times
  • Protecting Ghosts of the Forest

    Lisa Dabek (PhD, Psychology, 1994), senior conservation scientist at the Woodland Park Zoo, studies and protects tree kangaroos in the cloud forests of Papua New Guinea. 

    January 2024 Perspectives
  • Building Connections Through Opera

    Lokela Alexander Minami (BA, 2010; MA, 2012) turned a lifelong passion for opera into a career that introduces others to the art form.

    January 2024 Perspectives
  • For Dialect Coach, Every Voice is Unique

    As a dialect coach, Tré Cotten (MFA, 2017, Acting) has gained national attention for his ability to help actors bring authenticity to their characters. 

    January 2024 Perspectives
  • Raising the (Sustainable) Roof

    Alexa Bednarz (BA, Communication, 2012) turned an idea for environmentally friendly roofing material into Eco-Shelter Inc. Its first manufacturing facility will open in India in 2024. 

    January 2024 Perspectives
  • Tom Mara, SIFF exec, is preserving Seattle’s film history at the Cinerama

    Tom Mara, who helms the Seattle International Film festival, is making history by transforming the Cinerama into SIFF Cinema Downtown. While at the UW, Mara studied broadcast journalism, which pointed him toward work in public radio.

    UW Magazine
  • I am First-Generation: Alexes Harris

    "Have faith in yourself. Guide the decisions you make with YOUR passions, YOUR insight, and YOUR questions, what feels good to YOU! Do not let others or your fear force you in a certain direction or limit your potential. I always said, and continue to say to myself, that the only person I am competing with in life is myself.  Do not let anyone hold you back. Ask tons of questions, do not be afraid to ask for support or help when you need it. The smartest people stop and ask for help or clarity when they are unsure. Listen to advice, but seek it from many people and use what resonates with you the most. Do not be afraid to fail or stumble. Everyone does!  Also, have fun." – Alexes Harris (B.A., Sociology), University of Washington Presidential Term Professor, Professor of Sociology; Faculty Regent to the University of Washington Board of Regents; and UW Faculty Athletics Representative

    10/25/2023 | College of Arts & Sciences
  • Kay Tomita Hashimoto's First-Generation Story Remembered

    Kay was and remains the ultimate role model for all of her children. Making her way through four years at the UW, graduating, and finding work in journalism in the late 40s and early 50s, only a few years after the end of WWII, were huge accomplishments and showed a lot of grit and determination. For her kids, what was most inspiring was that she never complained about the hurdles she encountered, but faced each day with positive focus.

    10/19/2023 | College of Arts & Sciences
  • I am First-Generation: Reneé Diaz

    "Stepping out of my comfort zone and embracing the challenges of being a first-generation college student allowed me to leave a strong mark in the Husky community. I am grateful for the experiences and people I encountered along the way. I look forward to continuing my journey in the world of journalism – uncovering and sharing the stories that matter the most." – Reneé Diaz (B.A. Communication: Journalism and Public Interest Communication, 2023)

    10/18/2023 | College of Arts & Sciences
  • I am First-Generation: Usha Varanasi 

    "I believe that the journey should be as much fun, and as fulfilling, as reaching the goalpost, which may shift and thereby make life more challenging and interesting. Use the philosophy in this famous quote that 'nothing great is ever achieved without enthusiasm because enthusiasm urges you to do your best.'"- Usha Varanasi (Ph.D., Chemistry, 1968) , UW College of Arts & Sciences Chemistry Professor

    10/18/2023 | College of Arts & Sciences
  • We are First-Generation: College of Arts & Sciences Students and Alumni

    In the College of Arts & Sciences, we are proud to celebrate our first-generation community through a collection of stories! We honor our students and alumni, and their many contributions to our university community and beyond.

    10/15/2023 | College of Arts & Sciences
  • I am First-Generation: Yasmin Garfias

    Yasmin Garfias (B.A. Psychology, 2021), Graduate Student, M.A. Special Education with an emphasis in Applied Behavior Analysis, 2025

    College of Arts & Sciences
  • I am First Generation: Sariah Burdett

    "My parents had always encouraged me to go to college but as an Autistic kid from the middle of nowhere, I thought I wouldn’t be able to succeed in higher education and was destined for a small-town life. It wasn’t until Mr. Sugitan, my 10th grade English teacher, pushed the class to consider college and took our class on a field trip to UW that I could see myself succeeding in a big university like UW. Thanks to his encouragement, I dedicated myself to going to a university, preferably UW." - Sariah Burdett (B.A., History, Korean, and Asian Languages & Cultures, 2022), Program Coordinator, Department of French & Italian Studies

    College of Arts & Sciences