Many years ago, Heather Moran dropped out of college because she didn’t really know what she wanted to study. She has always been interested in inequality and human and societal behavior, so when she recently returned to college, she chose Sociology as her major. Moran is completing a minor in Human Development and Community Engagement as well as a master’s degree in Organizational Development in Temple University’s accelerated program. After graduating in 2022, she would like to work at the grassroots level in community development or affordable housing or on improving the inequalities in education or health.

Because she returned to college in 2020 during the pandemic, Moran has not yet been on Temple’s campus. She hopes to have the opportunity to connect more with the Temple community in the fall.

Last summer, Moran attended several BLM protests in her community; one event was organized by high school students.

Moran is impressed by the current generation of teenagers and becomes angry when she hears negative remarks about the youth.

“They are not appreciated for the caring and hardworking people they are and the loads they carry on their shoulders,” she said. “The leadership many young people, especially young Black people, have shown recently is a testament to their strength or character.”

Moran has always lived in predominantly white communities and has always been around people telling racist jokes or stories. She has called people out but recently realized that if the person doesn’t stop the hateful language, she doesn’t pursue the matter. Moran is working on having a strong response ready so that she can feel more confident. She is still trying to find her way to being a good ally in this fight.

“I find myself feeling overwhelmed by the discordance and the lack of connection that I am seeing in the greater world, the United States, and even in my small community. While I have long been aware of and pained by the racism in our society, it was something that tended to live outside of my lived life, and I have felt very helpless and powerless to combat it. … Being in the company of other people who are curious and concerned and intent on helping to transform our current culture into one that is more empathetic and compassionate in hopes that it will lead to more equity in our greater society will not only inspire me, it will also energize me and spur me on to becoming a more engaged person.”

In the eighth grade, Moran went on a trip with her church youth group and learned that other people’s lives were very different than hers. She always believed that she would be involved in helping to change that — and that is her personal wish.

Moran explains that the world’s social problems are like an iceberg. The visible part is all the wrongness that we can see, but under the water is everything that contributes to that wrongness — racism, wealth inequality, violence, etc. For the world, she wishes for the end of all inequalities and the things that cause them.

Spending time with her family is one of her favorite things, along with reading (when she has time), skiing, taking walks with her dogs, and hanging with friends. She listens to a lot of her kids’ favorite music. Moran had plans to visit Barcelona last year to visit her son who was studying abroad, but the pandemic interrupted, so traveling to Spain is near the top of her bucket list.