May

9

Senior Wisdom: Amirah Sequeira

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Name/Hometown/School/Major: Amirah Sequeira, Winnipeg, MB, CANADA BABY. CC – History and Sustainable Development.

Claim to Fame: Before the last Harry Potter movie came out, I spent an entire night in 209 writing a Harry Potter themed SGB newsletter. Also, Deantini called me a pain in the ass today (clearly I’ve succeeded in life). Once I got married on low steps. I was also the rep for the college republicans this year.

Otherwise, I spent 4 years trying to get you to call the White House to demand more funding for HIV/AIDS. Also JGH, UAEM, SGB, GHPN.

p.s. I make up acronyms to seem important.

Where are you going? To Washington DC to be an unpaid AIDS activist until I find someone who wants to pay me for it. (More likely: I’m forced to give up on the dream and work another job so that I can return to NYC and not be homeless). Eligible and wealthy bachelors – I’m taking applications!

Three things you learned at Columbia:

  1. Challenge authority. Speak truth to power. If something makes you angry,if someone is being treated unfairly, if people are being marginalized: YELL about it because no one else will. When people in positions of power fuck with things that you care about, make a hell of a lot of noise. DON’T STOP YELLING until they hear you.
  2. When American talk about the “Jets”, they’re not referring to the hockey team. (WTF?!)
  3. Little things can change your life. I’ve been blessed with countless seemingly random but truly serendipitous moments and interactions which have had significant impacts on my being. I once said hi to a guy in my first arabic class of freshman year before he switched to another section – after numerous run-ins, we had lunch in John Jay a few months later. That “hi” turned into one of the greatest friendships I’ve ever had. Many of my most meaningful relationships at this school have started out in such ways – and I’m thankful everyday for these beautiful moments (small miracles really) that brought such wonderful people into my life. I’ve learnt to never shy away from a conversation with a stranger – you never know how that person or that conversation may challenge and change you.

“Back in my day…” SIP made my friday afternoons wonderful. People hadn’t yet learned how to walk across campus while texting without tripping – now we’re all masters of the walking/texting relationship. Bwog had a “what was your favourite campus controversy?” question. I wonder why this is gone.

Justify your existence in 30 words or less: I’m driven by passion, try to approach life with love, and believe in the goodness of human kind.

More importantly: I’m Canadian – be jealous.

Is the War on Fun over? Who won? Any war stories? I’ve been to nearly every roof on campus, been tunnelling for hours multiple times, and had way too much fun on Low steps at 2:12 on a Wednesday night a couple of weeks ago.

Conclusion: there may be a War on Fun (I’m quite certain there is) but as with many things, the Columbia administration sucks at it.

Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? The most notable difference between the Mexican Cowboy and the Texan Cowboy at Artopolis is the inclusion of cheese (and onions instead of mango, but that’s irrelevant) in the Texan.The cheese brings out the delicious flavour of the buffalo chicken in an absolutely delectable way. Life without cheese would be disastrous for my taste buds.

That being said: Why must you make me choose Bwog!!?? I refuse.

Advice for the class of 2016:

  • The question isn’t “what” do you want to be, but “WHO” do you want to be? think long and hard about this.
  • “Balance” is subjective. Please don’t judge the balance you have in your own life based off of the way in which your friends balance theirs. You’ll make a lot of mistakes, overextend yourself, neglect to do your homework, find some semblance of “balance”, and then probably repeat the whole cycle again – that is totally okay!! But do try to sleep once in a while.
  • It really is okay to not be “okay” It took me three years to learn this, and to ask for help/support when I need it. Not only is it okay to ask for help, but you’re a stronger person for doing it. A walk around campus and a significant effort to remember how lucky (and privileged) I am to be at this school always gives me the strength to keep going/fighting/working/etc.
  • Have fun. Butler dance parties will solve ALL of your problems.

Any regrets? Mostly, I wish I could have spent more time with the friends who have been my family at Columbia. You all have made the past four years the best (challenging/fulfilling/beautiful/etc) of my life – for that, I’m eternally grateful.

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31 Comments

  1. fellow SGAC-er  

    Amirah is an inspiring, energetic, and passionate leader. So happy to have been able to work with her! SHE'S THE BEST

  2. Anonymous  

    amirah is the best!

  3. Alexander

    Amirah, you're awesome.

  4. Anonymous

    Watch out America, we're taking over!

  5. Anonymous

    you wouldn't have to choose with me ;)

  6. Anonymous  

    Simply put, you are an angel. The absolute best thing to come out of this campus

  7. Anonymous  

    This is your mama (Columbia) btw

  8. Ashley

    Amirah, you amazing lady, it's been so lovely bumping into you at all hours of the day in the elevators and at literally every single event I go to all year! Glad you found use for that BEAUTIFUL picture you took in my suite! :)

  9. Most annoying  

    SGB secretary. Those emails were ridiculously annoying.

    • Anonymous

      living with her while she wrote them, you have no idea how much time she put into her duties...clearly you never got to know her! she tried to make her weekly emails fun for everyone, and put a ton of thought in

  10. cor

    YAY i so recommended you for this! love you, and you are one of the best parts of my columbia experience.

  11. Anonymous  

    Canda is not america!

  12. de

    I LOVE YOU SO SO MUCH AMIRAH

  13. just curious  

    is she hispanic/spanish? or middle eastern? or both?!

  14. Why is it that

    the seniors (who should be incredibly proud and celebrating their accomplishments at this time of year) write bwog wisdoms reflecting on their experiences and are subsequently bombarded by largely baseless, rude, and upsetting comments on Bwog. In every single one of the senior wisdoms, there have been at least one comment that fits this description. Taking the time to comment on one's time at Columbia and contribute to Bwog should not be rewarded with the some of the things that have been said throughout these past weeks of senior wisdom. Unfortunately, the seniors who write these will be remembering the hate, not the love. While this is an anonymous forum, saying how fake someone is or how annoying people are is does nothing except damper what every single Columbian should be celebrating after four years here.

    • Anonymous

      Because we go to a school where we complain about the cruelty of online comments and the masochistic study culture but where Bwog gives a fair number of the senior wisdoms to hyper-achievers who are utter douchebags in real life.

      This doesn't go for Amirah, who I don't know and I presume is fine. It's just that contrary to the general Columbia achievement cult — which is absolutely universal, notwithstanding the perfunctory "don't stay in Butler" — there isn't a whole lot of correlation between the number of projects you can put your name on and your worth as a human being. And there's something fundamentally galling about seeing someone you know as genuinely malicious held up as a role model.

      No, I don't troll, because I doubt anyone I dislike would care, but if there's anything particularly apt that happens to be negative I'll still give it a thumbs up.

  15. Anonymous  

    Amirah is honestly one of the most amazing people I have met in my time at Columbia. She will do amazing things in the world when she leaves here. So glad to have known you, girl!

  16. Winn  

    Amirah, you are fantastic and an inspiration. I wish I had known you better but it was wonderful to have a human rights class with you this semester. Congrats and good luck, girl!

  17. Anonymous  

    I'm not a good person. I'm sarcastic and mean, and I submit insulting comments on other peoples' Senior Wisdom. Amirah is one of the few unambiguously good people I've ever met, and I'm really glad I got to interact with her. If there were more people like her in this world, it would be a much better place.

  18. Anon

    Amirah, I wish we had met earlier! I definitely missed out on a long friendship with a true campus gem...

    I know you'll be kicking ass and taking names wherever you go, so good luck, have fun and don't forget us mere mortals =)

    Love you!!

  19. canucks fan  

    I respect the Jets. Good to see more Canadian teams in the NHL!

  20. Carman3  

    I love you.

    I just.....really love you.

    Keep yo head up girl.

  21. The Nunnery  

    I love you, Amirah!

  22. '11

    I haven't spoken to Amirah in a looong time but I do remember her being an incredibly gracious, friendly person who never had a bad thing to say about other people (even if I mighta let some slip). She's going to be brilliant in whatever she does, I know it. Regardless, Amirah, I wish you a healthy successful life and I hope you continue to stay motivated.

    Congratulations on being done with school and the beginning of hopefully great days ahead.

  23. Anonymous  

    I love the Winnipeg Jets. I'm so glad that they exist again.

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