Name: Coco McCarthy

Role at WEA: Programs and Operations Intern

Hometown: Cupertino, CA

Fun Fact: Coco is my real name, for some reason. I think it’s zesty.

Why did you want to intern with WEA?

I am currently a rhetoric major at UC Berkeley. While I am content in my realm of study, I would prefer more opportunities to gain experience in other fields. I’m deeply invested in the issues surrounding women’s rights and environmental sustainability. I’ve also always been intent on getting involved with a grassroots non-profit working to improve my community. I was drawn towards WEA because it provides an opportunity to gain experience relevant to my personal interests while still allowing me to fully concentrate on rhetoric in school.

What’s your go-to strategy for lessening your environmental/climate footprint?

I focus on buying second hand, minimizing my consumption of animal products, and avoiding single use items. That said, I firmly believe that individual endeavors towards reducing environmental footprints have little to no global impact, which is why I want to join a larger organization, like WEA, that is more capable of truly making a difference.

Tell us about a woman who inspires you.

My grandmother is a relentlessly motivated businesswoman and empathetic matriarch who, despite various setbacks, continuously works towards bettering herself and her community. She is morbidly athletic, unbelievably stylish, and endlessly encouraging towards her grandchildren’s professional and personal endeavors. In the future, I hope to be as supportive and influential as her.

What’s your favorite thing to do in the Bay Area?

My absolute favorite thing to do in the Bay Area is to participate in open water swim races–the escape from Alcatraz swim is especially fun. My second favorite thing to do in the Bay Area is taking advantage of the region’s abundant boba selections (with reusable cups and straws, of course).

Any community events coming up you’re excited about (bonus points if it’s women-led/organized!)?

I’m looking forward to attending the new musical Lempicka later this spring at La Jolla Playhouse. The show focuses on painter Tamara de Lempicka’s life while exploring her bisexuality and the rise of fascism. It’s written and directed by accomplished and trailblazing women, along with having two female leads. It’s a bit of a trek to San Diego, but I highly recommend.

What are you currently reading / watching / listening to?

I’m re-reading Beloved by Toni Morrison, perpetually watching seasons 2–7 of Criminal Minds, and gleefully listening to Hadestown on repeat.

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