This week, we get to know a little more about Heather Regen, a senior studying Culture and Politics in the SFS with a concentration in sociolinguistics. She hails from Los Angeles, CA and identifies her spirit animal as the okapi.
How did you become involved in the Philodemic?
I came to the first debate of freshmen year, and Jacob and I were the only freshman to wander with the upperclassmen to Martin’s. We sat with Emma [Green] and Sam [Dulik], and I ordered pasta. When it got to the table, Sam looked me in the eye and said, “You’re a vegetarian.” We spent the next forty minutes talking about food politics.
What’s a way you’ve seen the Society change over your time here?
I’ve seen the Society turn more into just that—a society—in the sense that Philodemic is not just a Thursdays only event. Colleen made a family tree of mentor groups that hangs on the fridge of our “Terra Incognita: Female Empowerment” Magis house, and the tree reminds me how new and welcoming the “mentor family” idea is.
What’s been your involvement outside Philodemic?
I’ve written for the Voice since freshmen year; I’ve been the Leisure editor twice now. People have asked me if I do theater, or if I’m in GUSA. But no, you might see me everywhere, but I’m almost always at plays and meetings with my pen or a press pass, doing reporting.
I’ve had an alumnus say to me that being in the Voice and in Philo is like being in H*yas for Choice and Knights of Columbus. It shows you how much the perception of Philodemic has changed. I think it’s really healthy though, when people do other activities—when they do IRC, when they do the Hoya—they bring fresh perspectives to the Philodemic.
And actually, I don’t see Philodemic and the Voice as radically different at all: they’re both about getting ideas out there and debating them. Philo does that orally and extemporaneously, and the Voice does that through written word, in a more meditated way.
I also intern for the State Department. I’m a development intern at the U.S. Mission to the Organization of American States, which is kind of like a mini UN for the Americas. It’s exciting, and working with State has been the best internship that I’ve done in D.C.
What’s something you hope to see in the Society’s future?
I think it would be a great development if we could get people from Philodemic out into the D.C. community to volunteer with Urban Debate League, judging and coaching young debaters. We always need help, and there’s nothing more fun than watching an eleven year old in a tiny suit yelling about sanctions on Iran.
What’s a little-known fact about you?
I can juggle apples and take a bite out of one of the apples as I do it. I have an open offer: if anyone wants to learn to juggle, I’ll take the time to teach them [Editor’s Note: Heather can be reached for juggling lessons at firstname.lastname@example.org].