Only four years out of law school, Aja has enjoyed success as an attorney working in corporate finance in New York. Her career draws on the economics major she completed at Oxy, chosen thanks to encouragement from Professor Bevin Ashenmiller from Aja’s California Environment Semester in her first year.
Aja’s mother, an immigrant from Gambia, West Africa, wanted her daughter to pursue a career in law or medicine.
But Aja has a twin passion for the arts—from writing poetry to painting. She was at Oxy the first time she watched a video of spoken word poetry. “I remember sitting down right in front of Hameetman and listening for what felt like hours. And then I started writing my own. And then I studied abroad in Spain and did spoken word poetry onstage.”
Committed to her creative pursuits, Aja would love to be a full-time artist one day. She also values her Oxy network and the importance of philanthropy.
“I built a lot of confidence at Oxy that was called upon later in life,” she says. “It made me more compassionate, but also prepared me to advocate for myself.”
As an alumna, Aja has served on the Board of Governors and was one of the first to give to the first Day For Oxy, inspired by a desire to make things better for students, including mentorship of Black students. “It's nice to be connected with people and it feels good to be part of many different things. I want to help Oxy students who need it.”