Hello there! My name is Nesima. I’m a writer, strategist and community builder, based in Washington D.C. I grew up in Arizona, but always knew I was meant to leave the desert for more adventures and cooler weather. Currently, I’m having fun telling visual stories and connecting audiences to the amazing journalism coming out of The Atlantic.
Things I’m passionate about:
The intersection of storytelling and social impact:
How can media encourage outcomes such as as civic engagement, community building, greater empathy, and empowerment? That curiosity unconsciously led me into the budding field of audience engagement which goes beyond the publication of a story to figuring out how to make the news relevant, engaging and representative to readers. I care a lot about diversity and inclusion in the media, so I also want to build power and change who gets their narrative told.
I explored this through my bachelor’s and master’s degrees, but also through an internship in Guatemala and as a New Sector fellow in San Francisco for a year after feeling jaded about the unintended (and sometimes intended) effects of the international development and humanitarian aid industry. I still like to follow news and updates from the sector and would like to pursue solutions journalism, which focuses on reporting on innovative and effective responses to social issues.
I’m the daughter of Eritrean immigrants/asylum-seekers, so that has made me personally and professionally invested in keeping up with news about Eritrea’s developments regarding politics, human rights, culture, migration, media and more. I’ve written several papers on the region, have visited Ethiopia, and hope to visit Eritrea in the near future for the first time. Eritrea is so rarely covered in mainstream news, so I’m working on ways to give those stories more prominence and understanding.
Creative writing and multidisciplinary art:
I’ve been a creative writer ever since I can remember, penning stories about missing yo-yos and getting lost at Disneyland as a child to eventually more substantial fiction, poetry and personal essays. Most of my work in this area has been private but have been slowly performing, publishing and sharing as time allows. At the moment, my focus is on a novel-in-progress.
Writing workshops I’ve attended:
2015: VONA Voices Writing Workshop at the University of Miami
2017: THREAD at YALE
2018: Catapult Workshop, Poynter Minority Writers Workshop
Check out my full resume here.