Olivia Blinn

Humanitarian Aid Worker
Journalism and Integrated Media, B.A. '14
I spent four years in an environment that took human flourishing seriously — that challenged me to ask what it means to seek shalom — and it changed how I view the world.

How did your program at Biola prepare you for your career?

The journalism department taught me how to tell compelling stories — whether I'm using words, images or numbers. I learned how to be curious, ask good questions and look for answers. Most importantly, I graduated with an understanding that most of our work — and our lives — are about building relationships. Each of these skills and philosophies have served me well in humanitarian aid work. The journalism department provided me with unique opportunities to learn outside of the classroom, putting my skills to the test and helping me develop a robust portfolio.

What did you appreciate most about your time at Biola?

When I graduated from Biola, I hadn't simply earned a degree in journalism. I had become a whole new person from being encouraged and challenged by my friends, professors and mentors. I had made sense of my faith in new ways, learned how to serve others well and became equipped to take care of my mental and emotional health. I spent four years in an environment that took human flourishing seriously — that challenged me to ask what it means to seek shalom — and it changed how I view the world.

How did Biola equip you to be a more faithful follower of Jesus Christ?

My time at Biola provided me with the tools to make sense of my faith and theology. I learned how to look at scripture in new ways, and I fell even more in love with Jesus when I did. I began to take my call to love my neighbor more seriously than ever before — a call that has now brought me all over the world, seeking to serve the least of these.

What advice would you give to students considering your degree program?

The skills that you will acquire while studying journalism will serve you in a variety of areas of your life. Don't feel like you have to limit yourself to one area of study — take it from someone who has a minor in mathematics! Everything that you learn and experience will help find your niche. Know that you don't have to have your life or career planned out right now. Take one step at a time. Explore the opportunities that are available to you. Stay humble, ask lots of questions and learn from those around you.



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