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Nushrat Nur

est in health activism. “I remember growing up and them talking about the complications of just getting healthcare and that being completely bizarre to me as a kid and being like, ‘You have to save and pay insane sums of money to make sure you don’t die?’” Nur said. “It just didn’t make sense.”

Power Moves

Rising activist Nushrat Nur discusses how activisim shapes her world

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to have pride in her culture as a Muslim American. Nur’s father discussed social and political issues with her as young as age six even if she did not completely understand them.

But the moment didn’t last.

“My family has always influenced me in every aspect of my life from my religion to how I viewed myself as a person and how I approach the world,” Nur said. “They’ve instilled a lot of really good things in me in terms of making sure … I tried to be as selfless as I possibly could.”

A security guard stopped them, took her father’s passport and placed them into customs, forcing them to miss their connecting flight back home to Orlando from New York. “I just looked around customs, and I was like, ‘Wow, there’s a lot of us in here and almost none of us are white,’” Nur said.

Over the past year, the 20 year-old, UF journalism junior has participated in activist events and rallies such as protesting Richard Spencer’s appearance at UF.

Nur grew up in a Bangladeshi American family raised with the traditions of two cultures. Her parents taught her how to see the best in people and

34 | fall 2018

“I was always aware of these kinds of things happening, Nur said. “I think that was a little bit more of a slap in the face about the reality of living in a country that still oppresses a large proportion of its citizens,” Nur said. Last year, Nur was the social justice

Model: Nushrat Nur, 3rd year Journalism Major on the Pre-Med Track

we’re kind of forced to be vocal about these things … it’s kind of inherent in just our existence. Just us living and existing is

Her work with GRMR ties in with what she wants to do in the future. Health activism is an area she perceives as very underrepresented. The main areas of her concern with health activism involve equal access to health care, regardless of socioeconomic status or race, and increased health literacy. Right now, she is organizing an international aid trip that will hopefully happen next year.

ed,” Cambell said. “I think that really speaks to her need to make a change and make the world a better place.”

“Just knowing that people like her exist make me want to do the work that is required of me,” Joachim said.

In the future, Nur hopes to work internationally and set up free clinics in emergency areas that need relief in order to increase health literacy in underserved regions. For people to be able to stand up for themselves, they need to be aware of what they are entitled to and what their rights are, Nur said.

Shericia Campbell, a third-year biology major at Virginia State University, went to high school with Nur. Campbell remembered the time Nur helped organize a 9/11 vigil where she gave a speech that moved her “So many people I’m around just go with the flow and don’t really make an effort about their surroundings, but not Nushrat. She’s very motivat-

“It’s just generally important to put power to the people. We don’t want to rely on systems that have always been against us,” Nur said. “Put power back in our own hands.”

we don’t want to rely on systems that have always been against us. Put power back in our own hands

“It’s one thing to get treated, but you have to understand why you’re getting treated. And to know what you can have is really powerful, because then you can demand it,” Nur said. Nur said that being part of a group of driven people who want to genuinely find concrete, direct ways to help refugees touched her heart. Many of her close friends like Annelelia

design/olivia chen

“As a woman of color, we’re kind of forced to be vocal about these things … it’s kind of inherent in just our existence,” Nur said. “Just us living and existing is kind of revolutionary in and of itself.”

While she takes great pride in her work with The Tempest, her greatest pride is in her work as the external vice president of the Gators for Refugee Medical Relief (GRMR). Growing up, Nur said she overheard her family’s problems with health insurance. GRMR highlighted her particular inter-

photography/cindy chen

Experiences like this have influenced her budding activism, she said.

As Nur learned more about the world around her, she could not make sense of the injustices in the world and how people treated those they considered beneath them. Nur said she was particularly affected by the Ferguson, Missouri, shooting in 2014 during which a young black man, Michael Brown, was killed by a police officer. When she heard about the shooting in high school, she experienced the online and cultural shifts toward social consciousness catalyzed by these events. It motivated her to get more involved.

editor for The Tempest, a digital media and technology company focused on women of diverse backgrounds. This year, she stepped down in order to focus on other responsibilities, but she remains a staff writer. She has written articles about Richard Spencer’s appearance at UF and net neutrality. Her most recent article asserts that, in spite of the political and environmental turmoil that characterized 2017, “humanitarianism, empathy and raw resilience make life worth living.”

by nazli islam

or the first time, Nushrat Nur and her father thought they had made it through John F. Kennedy’s airport security without anyone taking a second glance at them.

Health activism combined her two areas of interest: medicine and activism. With GRMR, Nur has fundraised and directly assisted refugees coming to the United States from war-torn regions. As part of GRMR, Nur mentioned its partnership with another UF organization, Generational Relief in Prosthetics, which delivered a prosthetic hand to refugees they tutor in Jacksonville.

Joachim, who has known her for three years, drew inspiration from her passion.

kind of revolutionary in and of itself fall 2018| 35

Profile for Sparks Magazine

Sparks Magazine Issue No. 15 | University of Central Florida  

Sparks Magazine Issue No. 15 | University of Central Florida  

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