Allison Alcéna is a recent Asheville transplant, raised in Spring Valley, New York. She holds a Bachelors of Arts in English Literature and Black Studies from Swarthmore College. During her time in college, Allison researched how children’s literature can be a catalyst for social change and how literature has historically served as a form of resistance in Black communities. As a college student, Allison gravitated towards campus leadership positions where identity remained at the forefront of conversation and such opportunities proved invaluable for contextualizing her existence as well as gaining insight on the many manifestations marginalization has on a college campus.
Through her social justice work, Allison seeks to center the voices of marginalized people, particularly youth of color. As the Tzedek Fellow for the University of North Carolina at Asheville Center for Diversity Education, she will supervise a team of college students through their social justice endeavors both on campus and in the greater Asheville community. She hopes to explore the intersections between social justice and art, as well as encourage college students to pursue social justice organizing professionally.