Tell us a little about yourself.
My name is Charlotte Cheek and I am serving at Hawaiʻi Community College. I am originally from Louisville, Kentucky, and graduated from Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, with a BA in economics, sustainability and societies. I moved to Hilo in 2019 to serve with AmeriCorps and UH in the pilot VISTA program. My background includes work focused on food justice and waste diversion, and my interest lies in the intersection of social and environmental justice. In my spare time, I enjoy cooking, writing, biking and relaxing.
Why is joining the JCI VISTA Fellows program important for you and your future?
When I moved here for my first year of service with UH, I was a recent college graduate and had spent most of my time in the Midwest. In general, my understanding of sustainability was rooted in Western academia. This fellowship creates unique opportunities to connect with ʻāina, each other, and our greater community. Serving in this capacity allowed me to grow both personally and professionally, and I am thrilled to continue this work and learning for another year.
What kind of work do you hope to do after the program wraps up?
I am becoming increasingly interested in politics and policy, and am also considering graduate school.