Sebrena Brink is an introvert with an extrovert’s lifestyle from Spartanburg, SC. She is rising senior at Claflin University and will graduate with a BS in Biology and BA in Psychology in May of 2020. SHE hopes to one day intertwine her passions of helping people and research to ultimately practice medicine and do work focusing on disparities in mental health and NEURODEVELOPMENTAL conditions in minority communities.
SEBRENA uses her blog “brena’s breakthroughs” as an outlet to share her experiences with navigating different aspects of young adult life, coming into her own, and becoming the best version of herself while trying to slay in the process. In this chapter of her life, she is focused on living by her new mantra, “take care of business and heal thyself”, and is encouraging others to do the same.
“If you never allow yourself to become the example, you’re going to be the status quo.”
– Yvonne Orji
What are you passionate about and at what point/incident in your life did you recognize this passion is the key to your true path?
"I am passionate about helping other people feel seen, regardless of whether or not they see themselves. Throughout my life, I’ve dealt with different forms of abuse, mental health struggles, a shaky self-esteem, and Impostor Syndrome. I achieved a lot of different things and from the outside looking in, it looked like I had it all together. I knew I was a good person but outside of my resume and what I could do for others, I didn’t feel like my life mattered or that I was important. I constantly felt invisible and irrelevant to the majority of people I interacted with. I hit a low in the summer of 2018 and realized that if I wanted to feel seen by other people, then I needed to see and appreciate myself first. I started my journey toward loving myself and I knew I couldn’t be the only person around me feeling invisible. When I finally started to see and love myself, I noticed a change in myself that I couldn’t explain. I started to feel like I was coming into my own and seeing the person I was meant to be. I started to feel like I had purpose outside of my list of accomplishments. It didn’t matter if other people saw me because I finally saw myself, and I like what I see more and more as time goes on. It’s a never-ending journey that takes a lot of work and can only be taken a day a time, but I do my best to let people know the work is worth it. For a while it hurt that it took me so long to arrive at that point, but when I did, I realized that I wanted others to have that same breakthrough and it became one of my priorities. "
How do you use your passion to illuminate change in the world?
"I use my passion to illuminate change by integrating my passion to help others feel seen into my everyday life. I do it through my blog “brena’s breakthroughs” by talking about various topics spanning from adulting to mental health to learning to truly love myself while encouraging others to be their best selves. I do it by remaining persistent in my efforts to be a Black woman in STEM making room for others to the same. I do it by doing my best to encourage others directly through conversation, social media, or personal interactions. I do it by making sure I’m seeing others. "
If you could leave one lasting impression on others what would it be and why?
"If I could leave one lasting impression on others, it would be that they are important and their life matters. It matters to me, to the people around them, and to people they may never encounter during their lifetime. I would encourage them to be the best versions of themselves and to see themselves for the greatness they are. It is important for us to feel seen, but it is also important for us to know we’re being watched. While we work on seeing ourselves and others, there are other Black women, men, girls, boys and people that need to see a reflection of themselves in us. "