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Campus Cutie: Jackie Azelby

Hometown: Cresskill, New Jersey

Major: Biology

Class Year: 2016

How long have you been an activist for animal rights and how did it all start?

I’ve loved animals since before I can remember, but it wasn’t until my sophomore year of high school that I learned about a lot of issues surrounding animal rights and started speaking out about them. Even having been a vegetarian for 3 years, it wasn’t until my aunt, who has been vegan for a very long time, introduced me to the mistreatment of animals in places like zoos, circuses, and for cosmetic testing that I felt these animals’ stories had to be heard.

What made you want to speak out about it via social media (such as your Facebook) than just personalizing the issue by being vegan?

The main reason I share pictures, videos, and articles on social media is because I’ve come to learn that most people are completely unaware of the cruel practices that take place and are surprised and horrified when they learn about them. I’ve come across videos and literature on facebook that have influenced changes in my own lifestyle and truly believe that shedding light on these issues may influence others to reevaluate their own lifestyle choices.

How long have you been a vegetarian/vegan? Was it hard to adjust to your new diet? What advice would you give to others who are considering becoming a vegetarian or vegan?

I have been a vegan for a little over two years and was a vegetarian for five years before that. The transition to a vegan diet was much harder for me than the transition to a vegetarian diet simply because it was harder to make the connection between the food and the animal it comes from. It’s a lot easier to connect a plate of bacon to a pig than it is to connect ice cream or a grilled cheese sandwich to an abused dairy cow. I think the best advice for this considering a vegetarian/vegan diet would be to take your time, read up on recipes, and to have good reasons to become a vegetarian/vegan and really believe in them.

Do you have any pets? What are they like – characters/personalities?

I’m very fortunate to say I have five cats, a dog, and a horse that all have completely different personalities. My dog is the sweetest, most laid-back guy, which is the only reason we are able to make him live with five cats. Four of my cats are super social and love attention, while the other one epitomizes “scaredy cat”. My horse, Hugo, is very handsome and athletic, but he is the biggest dork and never fails to make me laugh.

What’s your favorite animal and why?

I’d have to say the pigs have come to be my favorite animal as I learn more and more about how misunderstood they are. Pigs are actually one of the top five most intelligent animals and are surprisingly very clean! I think what really solidified my love for them was when I visited an animal sanctuary and this large pig came running over when I called her name and proceeded to lay down next to me for a belly rub.  

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Sin Than

Mt Holyoke

Hello!!I'm Phyu-Sin, co-EIC of Her Campus Mt. Holyoke. Come to me with any concerns, questions, or comments, and my doors will always be open to you.
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