Hi everyone! My name is Selom Bediako, and I am ecstatic to be joining the Baldwin community.

I am a Ghanaian-American, passionate, ambitious, empathetic, and hard-working. Being a young Black woman in America is the foundation for much of my identity. Even within my existence as a Black woman, there is an aspect of duality as I am also a first-generation immigrant. My family is from Ghana, and I lived there for two years as a child. Growing up in America while being immersed in Ghanaian culture through the food, language, and customs in my daily life affords me a unique perspective on the African diaspora, and I would not have it any other way. There is great pride to be found in partaking in customs and traditions much older than yourself as well as shaping new ones and building a community, something greatly emphasized across Black cultures. At Duke, I am both part of the planning committee for the Black Student Alliance and a member of Duke Africa!

My family consists of my mom, dad, older sister, and twin little brothers. Additionally, my aunt, uncle, grandma, and cousins are my second set of parental figures and siblings. I love to spend time with my family, doing anything from watching African movies with my parents, playing Roblox with my little brothers, and sharing TikToks back and forth with my sister.

As for myself, I have numerous great loves that bring enjoyment to my life. One of these is music. I often curate playlists that align with my emotions and rely on it to act as a soundtrack for my life. (I am on the LDOC committee at Duke, so get hype!!) In conjunction with escaping through music, I am an avid reader. Although I read a bit of everything, YA will forever be my favorite genre. My other passions include traveling, art history, fashion, baking, sewing/crocheting, watching TV and movies, and napping (an art form I take very seriously). My to watch and read list is endlessly growing, but I would love any new recommendations! The final of great loves is Twitter. Despite its impending downfall, I will always be grateful for the joy it has given me and resources for personal edification from people who yearn to see the same radical change as me.

South African theologian Desmond Tutu once stated, “ My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together.” It is this belief in the necessity for collective human prosperity that drives most of my life, from my political philosophies to my everyday interactions. I’m deeply passionate about restructuring systems that perpetuate inequality within our country and across the world. At Duke, I hope to study neuroscience and global cultural studies, combining my interest in the numerous ways culture is shaped and impacts lives as well as the functions of the mind.

I am so excited to gain a community of strong female leaders through Baldwin!