Ivana Karastoeva

She was born in a small village, in the small country of Bulgaria but her family decided to move and to live in the big city of Las Vegas. This decision was one she had to get used to because, despite being only three at the time of the move, she nevertheless felt a deep-seated connection to her home country. But as the years went on, she realized how lucky she was to have been able to grow up in the States as she was exposed to a multitude of different languages, people, foods, and most importantly, different cultures. She fell in love with these cultures, admiring their beauty and their significance to the people that practice them as she, too, adored her own culture; but, she was confronted with the reality that not all cultures were equal. Some were becoming extinct due to forced assimilation and others were being exterminated in genocides even today. This upsetting reality made her want to learn about those threatened cultures and proceed to teach others of their existence and troubling circumstances in hopes of getting other to care and potentially change their trajectory. In university, she decided to major in Global Studies and get involved with international affairs publications to do just that, tell people about these amazing cultures and of their mistreatment. She hopes to one day not only inform against the atrocities she’s read about but actively work against them whether it be through developing policy or working on the ground. Only time will tell.