Hey y’all! I’m Avery and I’m from the M in the DMV. I proudly call this place home and am quick to share our lingo and play our “national” anthem (if you know you know!). As I’m writing this, I’ve barely been a Baldwin a week and have already taught three Baldwin girls our slang.

These days, I’m even prouder to call myself a Baldwin Scholar.

I come from a tradition of powerful Black women. My parents were raised by single Black women, both teachers and scholars. My parents raised me in an abundant village with these grandmothers who broke barriers and aunties who aren’t reeeally aunties but at this point are blood. I was raised in community with women who integrated their school district and were the first Black women in their field, women who dedicated their lives to others and women who made me laugh until my stomach hurt and did my braids too tight.

In the past, carrying the traditions and legacy of my village has looked like organizing my fellow classmates of color around police free schools and integrating the school district. The attention we gained around this lead me to really amazing experiences like being a director at the Youth Activism Project, a non-profit that trains young people in activism, and co-chairing a political campaign. The most valuable lessons I learned from these experiences were that you’re really never too young to do something and your only barrier is yourself. Don’t doubt yourself! Do those things that make the gears turn and keep you up at night.

I am so excited and honored to learn and grow with this incredible community of women in the Baldwin program and evolve into just half the woman those in my village are.