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Class of 2026
My name is Alja Imam Chaudhry, I grew up in Lahore, Pakistan where I completed majority of my high school before doing International Baccalaureate at United World College of Hong Kong. I'm a person with a rich tapestry of interests, where reading, community involvement, and academics play pivotal roles in...
Summer 2023

During my summer internship at a public library in Lahore, I had the privilege of working in a unique and inclusive environment, catering especially to women and queer individuals. This experience was a transformative journey that allowed me to lead significant initiatives and make a meaningful impact.

One of the highlights of my internship was the opportunity to spearhead the research and publication of the library's second anthology. This anthology was dedicated to raising awareness about climate change and sustainability, with a particular focus on issues relevant to our community. Leading a team of passionate individuals, I coordinated the collection and editing of articles from local authors and experts. It was an enlightening experience to see the library transform into a hub of climate-conscious literature, and our anthology played a vital role in disseminating valuable information and promoting eco-consciousness.

In addition to my work on the anthology, I took on the responsibility of hosting weekly book clubs that aimed to promote regional languages. This initiative allowed participants to explore literature in their native tongues, fostering a deeper connection to their cultural heritage. It was heartening to witness the enthusiasm and sense of identity that these book clubs instilled in our members.

Furthermore, I had the privilege of organizing larger events that brought our community together in celebration of art and expression. From musical nights that showcased local talents to poetry readings that encouraged creative self-expression, these events were a testament to the library's commitment to inclusivity and cultural diversity. They created spaces where individuals from all backgrounds could come together, share their stories, and celebrate their identities.

My summer internship at the public library in Lahore was not just a professional experience; it was a journey of empowerment and advocacy. Through my leadership in research, literature promotion, and event organization, I had the opportunity to contribute to the library's mission of inclusivity and empowerment, especially for women and queer individuals. It was a summer filled with purpose, learning, and the joy of bringing people together through the power of words and art.

Southern Asia