Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.

Episode 7: Featuring Lily Mordaunt & The Summer Interns

August 02, 2021 Bold Blind Beauty
Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.
Episode 7: Featuring Lily Mordaunt & The Summer Interns
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Date: 8/2/21

Episode title and number:  Featuring Lily Mordaunt & The Summer Interns #7

Brief summary of the show:

"Imposture syndrome comes for all of us. And I do feel like one of the best ways to help that is to just put yourself out there to remind yourself of the things that you are good at, remind yourself that you are probably not the only one with these struggles." ~Lily Mordaunt
 
 Once again, our summer interns: Christine Bharosi, Marta DiVito, and Ryan Maxwell will be taking over the podcast. In this special edition, they interview Lily Mordaunt and the topic of conversation revolves around Lily's personal experience of college life as a blind student.


Bullet points of key topics & timestamps:


0:24 | Welcome 
1:05 | Co-hosts' Chit-Chat 
7:14 | Introducing Lily Mordaunt
8:20 | Lily's Double Major 
10:32 | Dropping Psychology
11:50 | Thoughts On Accessibility 
12:57 | Triumphs
14:21 | Imposter Syndrome
16:25 | Building Community
23:03 | First Semester Anxiety
29:33 | Credits & Overextending Oneself
33:05 | Advice for Visually Impaired Students & Professionals

Contact information & social media handles to connect with Lily Mordaunt: 

Finding Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.

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Calls to action: 

Music Credit: “New Inspiration” by BasspartoutX  https://audiojungle.net/item/new-inspiration/7204018

Steph  0:24  
Welcome back to another special edition of Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. is clearing the air for more A.I.R. (accessibility, inclusion, and representation). I'm Stephanae McCoy. Once again, our summer interns will be taking over the podcast, but this time they will be interviewing a guest they selected. But first, my co-hosts, Nasreen Bhutta and Sylvia Stinson-Perez, and I have a little introductory chit-chat. We hope you enjoy this episode.

Nasreen  1:05  
Hey Steph, you know it's been a special treat having these wonderful interns on board with us these last couple of weeks.

Steph  1:12  
Yes, Nasreen. I agree. I think that they bring so much value to Bold Blind Beauty and our podcast Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. I just love how willing they are just to jump in and to learn and to grow. 

Nasreen  1:30  
Absolutely. I mean, they've done some extraordinary things here and got some real relevant work experience that they can definitely use moving forward. And come to think of it, some good mentorship, wouldn’t you say so?

Steph  1:42  
Oh, for sure. I mean, it's like we're mentoring them. But I feel like we're being mentored by them as well. Because sharing with us some of their, their tips and tricks and doing all these cool things. Because, I mean, think about it, they're growing up in a technology age, you know, all these things that we've been exposed to have been developed during our lifetime, but they're coming into it. So it's really cool being able to learn from them and to also give them the benefit of our knowledge and skills as well.

Nasreen  2:15  
Oh, absolutely. I love that. Yeah, I can see their growth potential. I think it's important that all organizations and companies out there, think about, you know, internship programs. Hiring interns, student interns, and giving them that, that relevancy, bring them into the fold of their company and showing them how to grow and adding value to their overall company and programs.

Steph  2:39  
Yes, definitely. And I’d like to mention, taking on interns with disabilities, is, I think, extra special because where they might not be able to broadly get that valuable work experience or opportunities, they're able to gain that experience and actually take that with them into their future careers. So I think it's a very necessary thing. And companies really need to consider taking on interns with disabilities.

Nasreen  3:10  
I love that point with disabilities because that's one of the pain points they come to us with. And I think that is really important to consider interns with disabilities. 

You know, what else? When I went to college, I didn't have a disability at the time. So for me, it was kind of seamless. It was a good experience but I’m wondering about you, Sylvia. How was your experience? What was that like? Orientation at college? What was that like?

Sylvia  3:36  
Well, I think going off to college, you’re a new adult. That's a scary experience for anyone, but certainly for people with disabilities and especially for those with vision loss. 

Interestingly, this year 2021 is 30 years since I got my bachelor's degree. That makes me feel so old, especially when we talk to our interns and I have a college student now as my daughter so it's challenging. And what's really interesting to me is talking to young people now, like our interns. The more things change, the more they stay the same, it seems. They're still having the same kinds of challenges that I experienced 30 years ago in college. But it's a great time to build your skills.

I'll admit that in middle and high school, I was very introverted. But when I was about to go to college, I literally made the decision, and I said, I am going to put myself out there. I'm going to be more outgoing, I'm going to make friends, I'm going to be the person I want to be. 

So college is a great chance to build your skills with adaptability, problem-solving, your learning style, and becoming a self-driven learner. And of course, teamwork. You also have a great opportunity to learn how to network and develop those social skills. All of these, that whole college time is critical to the adult life when you're going to have to work and utilize all of these skills. So it's kind of that testing ground for you in that it's more than just learning academics. It's learning about how to live life and how to work and how to socialize and how to connect. 

Socializing can be really hard if you can't see. I remember at that time, I could see well enough to get around without a cane. I could use a lot of regular size textbooks if I looked really close. And so I spent hours and hours reading to study. But I couldn't see people waving at me.. But I will tell you that in college, I made wonderful friends who still to this day are friends.

But it's so important that you take this time in college, to really just get ready for life and enjoy it. There are challenges to accessibility. Not all Disability Services centers are created equal. Some provide some great services, and some are really limited. But it's a time that we can learn to advocate for ourselves to be problem solvers and to be adaptable. My best advice is to be yourself to be authentic, to be determined. And then get out there and have fun, learn and really know that these are skills that you're going to use for the rest of your life.

Christine Bharosi  6:53  
Hey, I'm Christine Bharosi. 


Marta DiVito  6:56  
Hi, I am Marta DiVito.

Ryan Maxwell  6:58  
Hi, I'm Ryan Maxwell. And we are the three summer interns with Bold Blind Beauty.

Christine Bharosi  7:05  
This is podcast number seven of Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R.

Ryan  7:14  
Hey everyone, it's Ryan, one of the summer interns here at Bold Blind Beauty. I'm here with Marta DeVito and Christine Bharosi, who is also interning and today's guest is a real treat. She just graduated from CUNY Hunter College with her BA in English, and a concentration in creative writing and religion minor. 

She's currently working on her first novel and is working towards her goal of becoming an editor in the commercial or academic sectors. And you may know her from her blog or her YouTube channel where she shares everything from her sight loss journey in her vlog series, College Life and Blindness, covers, and some original music. Please welcome into your ears Lily Mordaunt.

Hi, Lily. Thanks for doing the podcast. 

Lily Mordaunt
Thanks for having me.

Christine  8:03  
Okay, hi, Lily. This is Christine Bharosi, also one of the summer interns at Bold Blind Beauty. We just wanted to ask you some questions regarding your time in college and the struggles you faced because of your vision loss if that's okay.

Lily
Yeah, of course.

Christine
All right. The first question that I want to ask you is what interested you about English and religion that you wanted to major in it?

Lily  8:31  
So I actually had a longer list of potential majors and minors that I just slowly checked off. My original goal was to double major in psychology and English with a concentration in creative writing, and a double minor in cultural anthropology and religion. I used to be able to say that all in one breath but had to pause somewhere in the middle of that and because of some accessibility issues, which I'm sure we'll get into later, I ended up dropping psych. English and religion were still things that interested me though.

I've been writing for honestly, as long as I can remember. From Poem In Your Pocket Day in elementary school to like these crazy fan fiction stories, I would write like SpongeBob/Dora hybrids. My siblings are a lot older than me and so they would either be forced to watch children's shows, or I would watch shows years ahead of my time. 

So I definitely also had like a few like SpongeBob/Degrassi hybrid shows fanfictions as well. Yeah, it was a lot going on but I've always enjoyed storytelling. And I was definitely an imaginative enough kid that whether I was writing it or verbalizing it, I've always enjoyed storytelling. 

And then religion; so I grew up technically Pentecostal. But honestly, I just went to a bunch of different churches, because my mom's friends are always like, “Oh my gosh, like a blind person, we must pray for you.” And so I grew up in a variety of Christian churches.

And then somewhere in junior high, I don't remember right now what sparked it, but I started looking into other religions. It might have been like my Global or World History class talking about more of the ancient religions. And I was like, ‘Oh, this stuff's kind of interesting.’ And so I would always research on my own. And so studying it just seemed like the next step, because there are so many crossover similarities.

No matter where in the world the religion was, like so many similarities in some of the religious stories, some of the religious iconography. And then cultural anthropology, I took one course and didn't like it. I just like reading about it, I don't think I actually want to study it. So we were left with English and religion.

Ryan  10:32  
You said you were once a psychology major, what kind of made you move away from that? Because all three of us interns, at some point, were psychology majors or are going to be psychology majors.

Lily  10:44  
I still really love psychology. And this ties into some of the issues that I had with my accessibility office. Actually, it all started with math.

I had a math course requirement. And I always say that I hate math, but that's not true, I think it's just easier to say I'm actually pretty good at math. But I also know how I have to learn. And I do best tactically, and having the images in front of me if that's what's needed, having the problem set out in front of me. And my accessibility office did not give me braille, they only offered a reader.

The readers were not math savvy. So there would be mistakes that were not my fault. It's one thing if I just didn't know what I was talking about, but the reader didn't know what they're talking about. And so that caused a lot of issues. I’ve taken a lot of psych courses, and so could have potentially ended up with a minor. But I still needed math classes for the minor and my accessibility office was not very useful. So I ultimately dropped it and I'm still contemplating doing something with psych in the future on the Master's level, perhaps at a different college.

Christine  11:50  
So you mentioned your Student Disability office, twice. And it is something that many visually impaired college students, no matter the level, would have to go through. Would you say that they were helpful during your academic career? And if they weren't, how did you overcome those obstacles that they set?

Lily  12:09  
I think they were helpful in some aspects for converting PDFs, which was great. When it came to support for math, though, they were not helpful. And I did continue to push. But there was only so much that I could do and at some certain point that I wanted to do. And you know, as I mentioned earlier, I ended up switching my major, which is very frustrating. 

But they were helpful, as I said, with regard to work, like converting PDFs or scanning my textbooks. And that was definitely invaluable in classes where there were no online versions of the textbooks, or where the online versions cost a lot more than the paperback. So that was definitely helpful, but they were not as helpful as they could have been.

Marta DiVito  12:57  
Hey, this is Marta, another summer intern, I just kind of wanted to jump in here. And being a person with a disability, we always talk about the challenges and how to overcome them. But we don't necessarily always highlight the triumphs. So Lily, what are some of your greatest triumphs in regards to college?

Lily  13:21  
I mean, graduating. 

Ryan
Congratulations.

Lily
Thank you, especially after just the struggles with the accessibility office, I definitely think that is my greatest accomplishment. I'm finally finishing, beyond that, what else? I definitely left with a few friends who I can see continuing to be a part of my life, at least for a little while. 

I always think that making new friends and finding connections with people is always like a good triumph for me. I do think I got better at... I like to think that I was already good at advocating for myself, but I think I got better at being a little bit more assertive. And I do view that as another triumph, and getting work done even when I didn't feel like it and those last-minute papers. I think those are always a triumph to have procrastinated on something and then still managed to get a good grade.

Marta 14:17  
Oh, yeah, for sure. I can totally relate to that.

Christine  14:21  
And speaking of procrastination, which is something everyone faces, imposter syndrome is a huge thing among college students. And, you know, you get a good grade on one paper, but then you have another paper, then you think, well, can I pull it off? So did you ever experience imposter syndrome while at Hunter? And if so, like, what were you doing that caused you to get the syndrome? And how did you overcome it?

Lily  14:48  
I think definitely during my creative writing classes because a lot of the time we would workshop each other's pieces. Which means that we would each have copies of each other's pieces, and we offer feedback and critiques. 

And I would read my classmates' writing and I'm just like, ‘wow, this is really good’ And it's just like, you know, I thought I was a good writer, but you're an amazing writer.’ And so now why am I writing this story? What is the point? And I think the best way; because, you know, this still comes up depending on like, if I'm reading a peer’s writing or something. I think the best way for me having gotten over that was just continuing to write and actually taking in the feedback.

Sometimes there would be a critique, but a critique isn't necessarily a criticism. You know, it might be like, “Okay, this dialogue was great, but you could tighten things up a little bit here.” And that doesn't necessarily mean your work is trash, and you should just throw it and yourself in the garbage. It just is... you already have a good foundation on something, you just have to build on it, which is what we are all in school to do, regardless of our major. 

And so I think it's about putting things into perspective because of course, you're not going to be an expert if you're in school to learn. And I think a lot of times, that's easier said than done, or easier said than remembered. But I think that was one of the things I had to constantly remind myself and constantly, you know, remind myself that some of the people who were amazing writers were also probably thinking the same thing about my other classmates as well. The people that I viewed as prolific authors were probably thinking the exact same things or did at one point. 

Ryan  16:25  
I feel like that's such a good point. Oftentimes, we feel like others are thinking about everyone else has their stuff together. Whereas we're like a huge mess. But usually, in college, I've heard a lot of people say this... I'm going into my freshman year, you know, usually, everybody is a mess, and everyone thinks they're alone in that mess. It’s so important to realize, we're all in this together.

But I feel like, especially having a disability, you can feel very alone and not find a sense of belonging. So could you speak to like, kind of finding a sense of community and getting friends? Like, what was that experience like being blind? 

Lily  17:05  
Oh, sure. So I have a very contradictory personality. I'm a very social person but I'm also very awkward. I have come to tell myself that my awkward is a part of my charm and that helps me. I enjoy meeting people but sometimes it's a little bit hard and that okay, cool. I can see this person standing in front of me, but I can't see their expression. Like, are they in the mood to talk to a person? Should I go up to them? Should I approach them? 

And so I feel like, once someone speaks to me, it's like, okay, great. Now I'm happy to like, turn on the social, like social mode, and talk to everyone. But it's about that, like initiating contact. 

And I did have a good enough headstart in that. So there's a schools app, and I don't know how many schools are on it, but you can sign in and register with your school and find different listings, or people looking for roommates. In my case, there was a whole bunch of people talking and they created a giant group chat and was looking for more people to talk to, and a chat had hundreds of people. 

And, you know, there were a certain number of people who were talking regularly. So they created a sub-group with maybe like 20 people. And they started having meetups throughout the city. And while I don't know what I was doing my freshman year or the summer before my freshman year, but I wasn't able to join them for their meetup. 

So the first day I met, everyone was on the first day of class, and they're all just meeting up. And I was like, ‘Oh, this is going to be so awkward because I haven't seen any of them.’ And it's going to be like the blind person in the midst of all of these sighted people who have already had an established connection. 

But I do feel because we were all freshmen and all generally confused, blind, or otherwise, I actually did have a bit of a head start because of doing mobility beforehand. And having an idea of where rooms would be…(oh I remember what I was doing that summer, I was taking the summer course to get you ahead if you're a freshman). And so I had spent some time on the campus and in the building. And, you know, so that was it for me.

It was like, ‘Oh, look, I can contribute this knowledge when this person is confused about where their psych classes are, where their whatever classes.’ And so for me, like I said, I did have that network of people already in place. And going beyond that. I also found out about a few clubs. And I was like, I don't know if I want to join this because then I had to go make friends and I already have friends from high school don't really need new friends? And I have these people like do I need to expand my circle more?

And this was partially coming from a place of I'm going to walk in there and be the only visually impaired person and I have no idea what the layout is. And there's gonna be a whole bunch of people. And I was not necessarily thinking about that deeply. At the time, it was just like that was sort of the justification in my mind, like, I already have a few friends, I don't need anymore.

But one thing that Hunter does is they have a lot of tabling sessions. So clubs and different groups and stuff will have a few designated areas. And they'll just they'll have bake sales. And they'll have like just invites and like, “Hey, we're doing this thing.” And so I very tentatively went to one of the clubs, and it ended up being perfectly fine. 

So it was just like deciding to put myself out there. Or deciding that I was going to drag one of my new friends to this event. So we could both be lost and confused freshmen together.


Christine  20:36  
That's nice. I just want to touch on that too, because I have my bachelor's in psychology actually. And that whole peer-to-peer getting to know people. When I had first started college at Lehman, I was very closed in it was a new space. It was a new setup, new expectations. And I was just so shy because I was internally freaking out.

But as I got more comfortable with the space, I started to open up more. And I wouldn't really join clubs because they were at night and it didn't work out for my schedule. But like if you know there were people in my classes who were struggling, I would help them. And that's how we made study groups. That's how I made some friends

Just talking about imposter syndrome, going back to that it can go both ways. It can go like seeing really amazing pieces like in your creative writing class but also seeing that some people scored lower than you on a test especially in psychology and feeling like Oh man, I said help this person like, you know they're struggling. 

So it really depends on how you take the energy imposter syndrome gives you and use it but…

Lily
I definitely, agree with that.

Christine
Yeah, it's not as bad meeting people when you come to the fact that everybody is confused. Everybody has something that's due and they procrastinated on it so once you get over that hump, it becomes a lot easier to make friends.

Marta  21:58  
Oh, yeah. Hey, can I just jump in a little bit too? I totally agree with everything that you're saying, as a person with a disability, you're like, do you do I belong here? Like, do my peers see me in the same way as I do? And like you kind of work 10 times harder to sort of prove that I am capable of, you know, getting my associate's degree or taking those psychology courses. And moving on. 

But I think walking the college campus is also a great idea. Because then you start to get a sense of where am I going? Where are the resources I need? So the first day you're not as lost and confused. Because at least you know where you’re going and, like, direct people to where they're going. It sort of strikes up a conversation a little bit. 

Lily
I definitely agree with that, yeah.

Ryan  23:03  
Right. Now me and the listeners are in the same boat. I'm just taking notes and absorbing all of your information, dropping this wisdom down on me. So one thing that Marta, Christina, and I were talking about a few days ago, was how a lot of visually impaired people and people, in general, have a kind of a rough, like, first semester, and it kind of scares me because I'm going off to college and like under six weeks.

So can you talk to how your first-semester experience was? And does it get better? Is it hell for all four years? 

Marta
No, Ryan, it's not.

Lily  23:46  
So my college experience… So being on-campus itself, Hunter’s, a commuter school, so it's not a traditional campus. The dorms are at a distance so I have to commute from the dorm to school. But being in the building itself was relatively okay. 

While there were some anxieties, I was relatively fine, because I'd also come from a high school that had a very large student body, there were like, 4000 kids. And while Hunter was 23, or 24,000, you know, significantly, it was a lot more, my adjustment period was a lot smoother than my friends who had come from high schools where their graduating class was 95. And so that in that regard, I did not have as much trouble. 

Where I did struggle was dorming. You know, it was my first time actively on my own. And I was very self-conscious about being in the kitchen, because I was like, I'm gonna have to carry things I'm gonna have to maneuver around people. Am I going to use my cane and like, make more trips? Am I going to forego my cane and like, trust in my vision? What am I doing? And so I ultimately hid in my room for the first couple of days until I heard that the hallway and kitchen were absolutely silent. And then I would just like slip out and like, heat something up and like, wash the dishes. 

And one day, my plan backfired, though, because someone just appeared in the kitchen. And I felt like this was deliberately done (obviously wasn't), but I felt like this was deliberately done. Like, they were just trying to catch me because they knew that I was hiding from the world. And the person just started talking to me. 

And they're just like, “Hey, like, how's it going?” And I'm just like, ‘Are you talking to me?’ And I looked around, and I'm like, it doesn't look like anyone else is in here. And I was like, ‘Um, hello.’ And, you know, they're like, “Oh, I haven't seen you around, are you a freshman? That's just like, ‘Oh my gosh, can they just like, read it all over my face?’ I was like, ‘Oh, yeah.’ And then they, you know, they were really nice. They're like, “Oh, like, if you need help getting around, like, let me know. And, you know, I usually bike to school, but sometimes I do, like, take the train and stuff like that. And if you want to go together,” I'm just like, Oh, this wasn't so bad. 

Ryan
People are actually nice.

Lily
Yeah, right. 

Christine
At least it worked out. 

Lily  25:51  
Yes, it definitely did. And so one nice thing about my dorm is they had mandatory floor events and like dorm events, since it's a commuter school, you sort of had to force a little bit of camaraderie and like the sense of community going on. So there were like, I think it was maybe five-floor events per semester at least so that you get to know the people around you and stuff. And so you know, things like that helped me to settle in more, but dorming was definitely where I struggled. 

Because again, not only was it my first time on my own, I didn't really cook more than breakfast foods. And, you know, it was just like, I don't want people staring at me. Like a blind person is cooking like, Oh my gosh, and some of them might have been making those judgments, but I feel like a lot of it was just in my head. And so yes, it did not stay that way. It definitely did not stay that way. 

And after a few days, I was definitely like, Okay, this is kind of ridiculous, like, at the very least, I’d go to the microwave and people are in there. Like it was a slow process. Like it took me a while to work up to stove usage while there were a bunch of other people around. Because I was just like, I don't want to like accidentally burn someone with the pan. But you know, it was a slow-growing process. But it definitely did not last all four years.

Christine  27:30  
Yeah. For me, Lehman is also a commuter school. So I was commuting back and forth from my home. I think for me, my first semester was just trash because it was such a, it was such a stark change. But, you know, after that first semester, that first semester, everything is a mess. And it's okay, if you have a messy semester, it's alright. As long as you just pick yourself back up. 

So like, after my first set of classes, I thought, Okay, what do I have to do differently? What, what do I need to do? Like, what resources are there? So I really took inventory with myself and saw where I could change things, where I could improve things, what worked, what didn't. And then every semester after that was pretty much easy. 

If I struggled with something, then I would either talk to my professor, or I would, you know, use resources like Khan Academy or YouTube to learn things, that was really helpful during my career. So, you know, I would recommend just looking around and keeping an open mind to your situation, because the last thing you want to do is just give up.

Marta
Oh for sure.

Lily  28:40  
I was definitely just thinking that YouTube is a great resource, whether it's learning a concept, or just also watching videos about someone else's, either college struggles, or college triumphs, or their college advice.

Marta  28:52  
I would also say go to the library, like I lived, mostly doing math, and that, like, I got tutored for math and stuff. But I basically lived in the library, because I went to school with my brothers and we all drove together. Any time I had to wait for somebody or something I would just go to the library. You’ll overhear advice, or you see other people struggling. And they're like, oh, okay, I'm not like the only one. I would say like, take it one semester at a time, and kind of just go from there.

Christine  29:33  
And another thing, too, is don't overload on credits. I know, people want to get out as fast as possible and I don't blame them. But there's no point in rushing to get out if you have a really bad transcript. So don't overdo it. Don't take like 18 credits your first semester, Ryan. 

Ryan
Yes, everyone, Christine is aiming that shade directly at me, Ryan Maxwell.

Lily 29:59  
One of my friends each semester took 18 and she ended up dropping down to 15. But she would always like to start with 18. And I do think to some extent like it's learning your limits, but I feel like you do have to be very realistic with yourself and realize like, ‘Okay, this is actually not working. So what am I putting my energy into?’

I had the opposite issue, I would always start at 15 and drop down to 12. And that was usually because I had a math or science thrown in there somewhere and I needed to give it more energy. But yes, be very realistic with yourself.

Crosstalk  30:33  
Yeah, you have to actually like, pass the classes are absolutely insane. But if you can pull it off, yeah. Ryan, you are like you just like for what like for tests, more exams for papers, like, in the same week? sample pass? classes and that just take the credit?

Christine  30:56  
Yeah, Cs may get degrees, but anything above a C is better.

Marta 31:03  
Yeah, you don't want to be sliding until the very last minute, ‘am I going to pass the class?’ You need a nice cushion? Of like a nice 80 percent so if you make a mistake, you have that cushion to sort of save you.

Ryan
I can see that I'm being peer pressured into taking less credits so... 

Lily  31:30  
Not quite. Listen, I'm just saying be realistic. If you feel like you're starting to struggle, or if you're thinking that it's a little too stressful, it's often better to drop it and retake it, then to not have done well in all of them. Versus you could pull it off, and it'll be great, but just be aware of yourself. 

Be aware of what your body and mind are telling you. Is the stress too much? Also if you're taking 18 classes, are they cutting into any social time? You know, cuz that's also really important to get in. So just be aware.

Marta  31:59  
Yeah, you don't want it like consuming your life, you want to like live your life. Trust me, cuz I was there like caring too much about school. Like I gotta get that A gotta get that A. Nothing has to be perfect all the time. And it can really eat at you and you don't really want to be anxious and having anxiety about school only for like, what, like, four years? Live your life.

Lily
Just be honest with yourself.

Ryan  32:29  
I think that's a great point, we really need to just be prioritizing self care, especially as people who are minorities, whether that may mean a gender minority or a person with a disability, like every day we're going through some nonsense. People are looking at us like, oh, you're blind or someone is questioning our integrity and our ability. And it's like, I don't have time to deal with that and also deal with this professor and like overextending myself to do work. 

Lily
Yeah. 10,000%.

Christine  33:05  
All right. So this has been really good. Lily, do you want to close with any other advice you have, not just for students, but for professionals too also have vision problems?.

Lily  33:15  
I think that you just have to put yourself out there. I think that imposter syndrome comes for us all, like disabled, minoritied, gendered, just sexualitied. Yes, I'm turning all of these things into not quite verbs, Oh, my gosh, what degree did I get again?

Anyway, imposture syndrome comes for all of us. And I do feel like one of the best ways to help that is to just put yourself out there to remind yourself of the things that you are good at, remind yourself that you are probably not the only one with these struggles. 

And for the blind professionals, I mean, it's definitely hard. It's hard for the sighted world. And so once you toss in like disabled, there are people who either underestimate you on the grounds of your disability, or whatever the case may be. And the only real cure for that is to just prove them wrong. Just continue working toward it. If one company won't accept you, another company definitely will.

One other thing I wanted to mention is I do feel like I have some imposter syndrome after having graduated taking so long to find a job. And I'm just like, am I actually not as qualified as I thought I was. That's something that I'm still kind of working through. A quick summer job is one thing, but I'm trying to find a career and full-time money here. 

So I feel like that's another instance where it's just kind of like, you just have to keep putting yourself out there, I have to just keep applying. I think Corona has also impacted that a lot in that I kind of feel like my having gotten this degree doesn't feel real because I'm not having to apply it anywhere. And I do know, the job market is flooded even more because of Corona. And so I try to keep that in mind. But yeah, just keep going. 

Christine  35:02  
Yeah, I agree. I feel like when everyone says, Oh, you should finish college in four years, it's like many believe that it's set in stone, but it's not. Sometimes stuff happens like a pandemic. 

Marta
Totally. 

Christine
And another thing too is that a lot of graduations this year, and last year, were virtual, so it didn't really feel real. And I do just want to say that even if you didn't physically walk across the stage, you still got your degree. You've worked for it all the work you did up until this point, and regardless of Corona is still valid, you still got that degree.

And I feel like Yeah, I would agree. Just put yourself out there. Sometimes the only way that you can break those misconceptions is if you just go for it and do it, but also know your limits. And also know like, Okay, if this is really making you uncomfortable, then maybe you shouldn't do it. Or maybe you should better prepare yourself for it when the time comes. And there's nothing wrong with that.

Lily 36:01  
Similar to what I told Ryan, just be honest with yourself, be candid with yourself, and don't forget your self-care time because if it's getting taxing like looking for jobs, or you know, whatever it is just step back from it for a little while. That's also perfectly acceptable.

Christine  36:15  
Toxic productivity, that's just as bad as not applying yourself. 

Marta 36:19  
Yeah, as long as you get stuff done. Doesn't matter how long it takes you to do it. Take one day at a time. 

Christine  36:26  
So this has been a really good conversation. You can find Lily on her YouTube channel Lily Mordaunt. And you can also check her out on Instagram and Twitter, also at Lilly Mordaunt, and be sure to check out her series college life and blindness on YouTube. Lily, thank you so much for coming on today. 

Lily
Thanks for having me.

Steph  36:51  
Thank you for listening to this special edition of bold blind beauty on air. Please follow us at Bold Blind Beauty On A.I.R. on your favorite podcast platform. If you'd like to connect with us, you can find us at boldblindbeauty.com or on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter @boldblindbeauty. Have a fabulous day!

Transcribed by https://otter.ai

Welcome
Co-hosts' Chit-Chat
Introducing Lily Mordaunt
Lily's Double Major
Dropping Psychology
Thoughts On Accessibillity
Triumphs
Imposter Syndrome
Building Community
First Semester Anxiety
Credits & Overextending Oneself
Advice For Students & Professionals