Grewal and Huston discuss their careers in mental health and sustainable agriculture

Jasleena Grewal and Aaron Huston

As part of IAS Mentor Chats, alums Jasleena Grewal and Aaron Huston met with students to share their career journeys and how they leveraged their time at UW Bothell.

Grewal (’13, Environmental Science) was a peer tutor for the UW Bothell Writing & Communication Center, on the editorial board of the literary and arts journal, Clamor, and a volunteer with The Dream Project, supporting equitable access to higher education. Currently, she’s working on a psychiatric nurse practitioner degree at Seattle University and is a freelance journalist writing about art, culture, and social justice. Her work has been seen in YES! Magazine, Brown Girl Magazine, Truthout, and TIME.

Huston (’13, Environmental Studies and Global Studies) is co-owner of Farmstand Local Foods, which supports economically and environmentally sustainable food systems by facilitating connections between local producers and consumers. You may find him delivering fresh farm product to restaurants, sharing ideas about how to cook with local foods, maintaining green spaces, or leading farm tours. Prior to joining Farmstand Local Foods, Huston worked with 21 Acres as a Sustainability Educator and helped form the farmer-owned cooperative, Puget Sound Food Hub.

UW Bothell enhanced Huston’s career opportunities. “I attended UW Bothell as a transfer student and really dove into extracurricular and volunteer roles.  I knew that the connections and learning opportunities would help further my finding a career that complimented my interests in environmental sustainability. It's extremely valuable to network, not only within your own degree, but among other pathways, and to get involved as much as possible.  For example, I organized and planned many on and off campus events as part of my role in the Sustainability Organization and as a CBLR Earth Day Fellow.  In a way, I was a liaison for students, connecting them to non-profit volunteer opportunities and events I organized on campus, like the campus wide Earth Day Celebration.  Students were able to gain additional experiences in public speaking, event management, and leadership, which are great skills to put on their resume.  The experiences I had as a student leader allowed me to collaborate with others, and this came to be very useful in applying for jobs. I had the job skills, network connections, and a hands-on UWB education that employers were looking for to find a career in my field.  UW Bothell and the amazing staff/faculty helped me grow professionally, which I'm so thankful for, and I plan to stay connected as an alum as the years go on!”

Grewal was thrilled to meet with students. “Getting to do Mentor Chats with UWB students is a special opportunity for me because I get to inspire and support others, but also provide space for others to share their stories with me and their classmates. My years at UWB student were crucial and formative, so to reflect on that time and also share how I've grown since then is empowering for both me and the group I am speaking with."