What influenced you to get involved with veganism and living more sustainably?
During my freshman year at Hamilton, the course Food and Philosophy opened my eyes to feeling I wasn’t living my life in line with my personal values. The in-class discussions and readings motivated me to make changes and ultimately go vegan. I continued to get more involved on a broader scale by joining the Vegan Club and getting active as a Hamilton sustainability coordinator. I wanted to make systematic change and did so with initiatives like Meatfree Mondays at McEwen Dining Hall.
How did your passions impact your career path and decision to work at Omni Foods?
My previous interests and internships were with non-profits. I was drawn to how OmniFoods grew out of a non-profit awareness and campaigns in Asia. I knew I wanted to make a positive change for animals, but also make options easy and accessible. OmniFoods appealed to me because they are a leading plant-based pork brand, which hasn’t previously been on the market on a large scale. I can really see how the work I’m doing makes the world change for the better. Since I’ve been at the company, we’ve had a lot of exciting launches, and its Instagram has grown 46%! In Asia, we’ve partnered with brands like Taco Bell, McDonald’s, and Starbucks, and in North America we have launched at Whole Foods, Sprouts, and recently, the national chain Pokeworks.
What do you love about working with social media?
At the beginning of the pandemic, I started getting into social media and made a TikTok. When I amassed around 500K likes, it helped me understand the power of social media. Ever since then my interest has kept growing. Social media is a great way to spread awareness, and I love the ability to incorporate humor in posts.
Major/Minor: World Politics/Environmental Studies
Hometown: Bethesda, Md.
High School: Bethesda Chevy Chase
Extracurriculars: Head of the Vegan Club, Hamilton Sustainability Club
What are you looking forward to most?
It’s great to see the trends all over the market with the plant-based sector. Plant-based foods are growing at almost twice the rate of the food sector in general. I’m looking forward to continuing working with a brand that is mission-oriented toward animal agriculture issues and to see the brand grow. I enjoy working in an environment where I’m not just clocking into my job; I’m a consumer of the product. I understand the consumer base, and it’s one reason I connect to the brand so much. I think it’s really important that the brand has a clear story to tell and a mission to change the world. I’m excited to continue my work and be a part of the journey of providing accessible plant-based options.
How did Hamilton prepare you for this past summer and future job?
My Hamilton academic background is policy oriented. Previously, I’ve had experience job shadowing and learning more about environment and animal welfare, global health, and political issues. My background in politics and awareness prepared me to think about all of these issues daily and connect to our like-minded consumers on a deeper level. I would have never connected to any of these factors initially had it not been for my academic background in world politics, environmental studies, and policy.
What advice would you give other Hamilton students pursuing a career that also combines their hobbies and passions?
I think there are really two parts. One, is how the career aligns with your values and skills, and the other is how you enjoy it. I’m very lucky to feel like both of these align at my current job. I think knowing what your values are and what field or company you are interested in can really narrow it down, whether it be a non-profit or general ecosystem. It’s difficult to find a job that aligns with your skills or interests, but I think putting yourself out there and doing things on your own to show what you have or can do is important. From my own work on social media, I learned it’s not necessarily your specific degree that determines what job you do; you can.