UNITY recently hosted Amiyah Begay as a youth intern for three weeks through a partnership with the Phoenix Indian Center. She was able to attend UNITY Staff planning meetings and was assigned tasks. UNITY welcomes the opportunity to engage Native Youth in the workplace. Click below to learn more about Amiyah in her Self Introduction.
My name is Amiyah Begay and I am Towering House Clan, born for the Deer Spring Clan, my maternal Grandfather’s are Coyote Pass clan, and my paternal Grandfathers are Zuni Edge Water Clan. I am from the Navajo Nation and I currently attend Thunderbird High School in Phoenix, Arizona. On a more casual note, I mainly spend my time working, sleeping, and talking with friends. I played varsity softball all 3 years of high school, but sadly not my senior year due to COVID-19, which is okay because it’s important to decline the curve especially in Arizona. I also took part in the Future Inspired Native American Youth Council which is sponsored by the Phoenix Indian Center, where I’m able to intern for UNITY, Inc. After I graduate high school I plan on entering the medical field to become an OBGYN. Lastly, I plan on getting a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration and Financial analyst, my strong areas were always math and science.
The issue that sticks out to me the most is how teenagers, and Native youth don’t have access to counseling, or therapy. A vast amount of youth have issues in their personal lives that affect them beyond what adults see. From my point of view, most of the youth “rant” or “vent” on social media such as tik tok, Instagram, or even Snapchat, I too had done this in the past, but I later learned that I don’t have to explain myself or think about solutions publically, which in conclusion is a toxic behavior. In other cases, some youth express how they deal with abuse in the household, and they feel they have no one to turn to, because getting help is expensive and can be stigmatized within a household. I hear some stories where parents always say “ what do you have to be depressed about?” or “you’re not sad” or even “do you know what that feels like?” This is important to me because this can all relate to historical trauma that goes back generations of not healing yourself first, then not realizing that you are passing it on.
During the pandemic, I’ve spent more time at work because I want to save money for college. After all, 4 years of college money does add up even with scholarships and financial aid. Other ways of dealing with the pandemic were learning how to cook and bake especially being home alone with my brother. It’s great to make homemade food than take out. Plus, it helps out my parents who work all day and gives them a break to relax from there tiring lives. Since the stay-at-home order came into place by Governor Ducey, I’ve Facetime my friends to catch up rather than visiting them. Also attending webinars or meetings hosted by the Phoenix Indian Center to reach out to others virtually than in person. Lastly, I completed my junior year online and finishing summer homework for the AP courses I’ll be taking my senior year.
To end on a good note I want to thank everyone who gave me the time in your busy day to read my biography, to be honest, this was the first introduction I had typed instead of publicly speaking in person. So far interning for UNITY, Inc. has been entertaining because I have the opportunity to be part of a great team and staff who want to make changes/improvements in our community as Native Youth. I would love to encourage everyone to try to intern at a company that peaks your interests because it can help with your career choice of what fits you the best.
Ahe’hee, be safe and let the creator guide you on your journey into life! Make sure to social distance, sanitize, and importantly wear your masks.