Meet our Alumna – Yana Toneva

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Meet our alumni questionnaire

 

Tell us about yourself ?

My name is Yana and it’s been exactly 10 years since I was a camper at GLOW!

 

Where are you now and what you do?

I’m getting my PhD in Social Psychology at New York University.

 

What do you love about your job (studies)?

My degree focuses on research about human behavior. I get to think about theories concerning the reasons people act the way they do and I get to conduct experiments which allow me to test these theories.

 

Which are the key experiences in life that helped you become the person you are?

GLOW was definitely one such experience. I currently study gender bias in male-dominated spaces and I can trace my interest in such topics back to my experience at GLOW. I clearly remember that this was the place where I learned that gender and sex are two distinct concepts.

 

When things get tough, how do you keep yourself going?

I get inspiration from the people I love.

 

Tell us something interesting that very few people know about you!

I did ballet for many years growing up. I miss it terribly and while I haven’t danced in ages I go to the ballet as often as I can.

 

If you had an ultimate power what would you change about the world nowadays?

I would love to make people less afraid of their differences. A lot of the turmoil in the world right now is directly related to people’s fears about the changing world. I wish people were more willing to understand each other, embrace differences, and be less afraid of the unknown.

 

What is GLOW for you?

GLOW is friendship. Several of my closest friends are girls I met at GLOW.

 

What is your advice for the young people?

Be brave, curious, and always have hope.