Profiles of 2016 Student Winners
Thanks to the generous support of the Mr. & Mrs. Samuel Oschin Family Foundation, UCLA Disability Studies is pleased to announce the winners of the 2016 Samuel Oschin Scholarship. Jameelah Najieb will be awarded $3,500, Jake Abarca will be awarded $2000, and Miso Kwak and Mandy Mekhail have received Honorable Mentions.The selection committee received a number of highly qualified applicants. Jameelah and Jake rose to the top by clearly exemplifying the spirit of the Samuel Oschin Scholarship. The committee was impressed by their strong academic record, resumes that highlight service, and their viable plans to positively impact the disability community in their future careers.JAMEELAH NAJIEB ($3500)
Jameelah is currently a senior completing a double major in Political Science and Sociology with a minor in Disability Studies. She is an intern and student volunteer at the Disability Rights Legal Center in Los Angeles and a student volunteer in the Justice Corps program in the Los Angeles Superior Courts. Jameelah’s legal internships fuel her commitment to pursue a law degree and to continue being an advocate as part of the disability movement. Learning about disability law and policy and scrutinizing how these laws can be improved, is crucial to being an advocate for underrepresented communities. Through Disability Studies she found a purpose for her passion and a community for whom she would advocate. JAKE ABARCA ($2000)
Jake is a senior majoring in Anthropology. His academic interests have explored the intersections of anthropology and disability studies. As part of the Lemelson Anthropological Honors Program, he has been conducting ethnographic research on identity, community, embodiment, and empowerment. His research on the body has pushed him to explore holistic forms of treatment. Jake is interning at Therapy West where he is working alongside occupational therapists in client-centered practices furthering his research interests in sensory therapy integration. Jake exemplifies the ways research and practice can inform each other.
Honorable MentionMISO KWAK
Miso Kwak is a senior completing a degree in Psychology and double minors in Education and Disability Studies. Miso coordinated “Braille on Bruinwalk” for 2016’s Disability Awareness Week. This event encouraged folks passing by to learn about Braille, test different tools, and to appreciate the blind community at UCLA. Miso is a mentor for Accessible Science, a high school science camp for blind students. Through her example, she hopes to show the students that a disability can enrich human understandingMANDY MEKHAIL
Mandy Mekhail is a senior completing a degree in Psychology. Mandy has focused her undergraduate career on holistic wellness and education. Mandy’s commitment to wellness is exemplified in her many student leadership positions. As the Assistant Commissioner for the Undergraduate Students Association Council’s Student Wellness Commission (SWC), Mandy has expanded the office’s work on health and wellness to include advocacy for food security, housing, and financial security.