Meet Zoei: Aspiring, Creative, and All-Around Cool Girl

Zoei Nijjar is a passionate communications major, originally from California. She is laid-back, cool, ambitious, and an ultimate sweetheart. Read on to learn more about this small-town gal and how she’s making her mark in the Vancouver community.

Hometown: Davis, California

Major: Communications

Year: 2

Age:19

 

You’re not originally from Canada. What was your transition like, and how does life in Vancouver compare to your hometown?

I'm from a small town so having Vancouver so close to me has been amazing. There is so much going on in the city, I don't think I will ever get bored. Vancouver is pretty similar to California, it rains a lot more but the people here are really cool and talented. It was difficult to meet people at first, but once I made a couple friends, they really opened up the city to me and now I feel like I'm meeting new people all the time. I do miss the small-town life sometimes though, it was less hectic and I got more sleep.

 

What upcoming projects are you working on at the moment?

I’m helping my friend kickstart a new project called Contrast Collective. We want to create a platform for women of colour and non-binary people of colour to showcase their artwork, and to make connections with other amazing artists here in Vancouver. It is still in the preliminary stages, but we want to release a zine in the summer fully curated by women of colour and non-binary people of colour. If you want more information about Contrast, you can find us on Facebook and Instagram at @contrastvancouver. I also started recently writing for BeatRoute, which is huge for me, and I’m really excited to see where that goes.

 

Where would you want your communications degree to take you?

I decided to study communications because I wanted to go into the business and marketing side of the music industry. I want to help small artists get the recognition they deserve for producing art, and not just make money off of them, which sadly doesn’t seem to be a super common concept these days. I’m open to try a lot of different things with my degree, but I would love to work for an events company, a community organization, or a venue. My dream job would be to manage a band and go on tour once, that would be so cool.

 

I understand that you are vegan, but allergic to tree-nuts and soy as well. How do you try to balance a healthy diet despite all these allergies and dietary choices?

Everybody is different, and every body is different. This is what I tell people before I talk about my diet, because what works for me may not work for everyone. I find it pretty easy being a nut free/ soy free vegan. People don’t realize how many options are out there. My diet is way more diverse than before I went vegan because now I’m trying foods I hadn’t even heard of before, like sunflower seed butter (10/10 would recommend), and coconut milk ice cream! I don’t even eat super obscure foods that much, so my diet seems pretty normal. Fruits, veggies, bagels, pizza… I still like to eat yummy food!

 

Any inspirational advice for individuals looking to make a difference in the Vancouver community?

I don’t have too many cool things on my resume, so I don’t know if I’m the one to give inspirational advice, but I think if you want to make a difference, it is important to keep in mind that one person really can make a change. You can do it! Also, stay true to yourself and don’t get too caught up with trends and what is “in”, whether that be music, clothes, or anything else. Trends are just that: trends. They come and go, so stay true to yourself and you will never go out of season!

 

Photos provided by the interviewee

About The Author

Alyssa Manalo is a second year Communications major and Interactive Arts and Technology minor at Simon Fraser University. She is a avid reader, passionate dancer, and loves to create art of all forms. You can find out more about her on Instagram @alyssamanalo and Twitter @alyssarmanalo.