Voices – 9/25/2020

Grace Bagadiong- Senior

Tell us a bit about yourself? What kind of things do you like to do, hobbies, fun facts, etc.?

My name is Grace Bagadiong and I’m a senior here at MHS. Some of my favorite hobbies are reading books and writing because they help me learn how the world works and it teaches me new things everyday. I also participate in drama club and have been in about eight shows with it so far.

What are you passionate about speaking out on in the community? Are there any organizations or clubs that you’re a part of that work to help spread the messages that you’re advocating for?

I’m a huge activist for social issues because I mainly speak out for disabilities, [minorities], and so many other topics. I’m very passionate about inclusiveness and I do not want to follow the stereotypes that are presented in the society because to me, not all of them are true. I don’t participate in organizations that promote social justice, but I recently applied to be a member of Mason’s Inclusive Excellence Leadership Team. It’s an advocacy group of students who stand up to bias and discrimination and I have a feeling that it will empower me to raise my voice. I also advocate on social media and I created my very own blog called “Life Unafraid” where I post my personal stories, poetry, and voice.

What do you hope to do through spreading the word and informing others about these topics?

My goal is to end stereotypes and to develop a stronger connection with all of the diverse individuals. I hope to spread the message of embracing diversity and promoting humanity.

How does your identity and the things you support play a role in the way you view the world?

Because I am half-Filipino and physically disabled, I may have been stereotyped before and it did not make me feel comfortable. It’s the main reason why my view of the world has changed because I realized I wanted to embrace diversity and to not judge others based on what the society says. It became a major role for me to achieve so I can respect others and to promote better humanity values.

Why are these topics so meaningful to you?

Those topics are meaningful to me as I believe every person has an unique story and no one can compare themselves to each other. It is important to represent all of the positive and negative things about everyone so that the world can become more of an accepting place.

What would you like to see change or improve within the world we live in? That is, what do you want to change by advocating for the topics you’re speaking out on?

I’d like to see the world lead everyone to be kinder and more understanding. It simply needs to work hard to become a better place where no one has to fear for their own sake. They do not deserve to be mistreated because of how they look so the communities need to improve their respectful values. Every person has a  powerful voice and there should be fair equality among all of us.

Interview by Meghan Dincler – mdincler.chronicle@gmail.com