More About Me
Hi there! My name is Dray. I’m a recent graduate from Pomona College, where I majored in Africana Studies with a concentration in literature. I’m from Florida, but I’ve spent the past four years living in the Inland Valley of Southern California, pursuing my degree at the Claremont Colleges.
I attribute an analytical eye and my dedication to writing to an early affinity for science fiction, Afrofuturism, Southern Gothic, and speculative fiction books that led me to imagine and build my own fictional realms. This writing and world-building slowly gave way to a passion for English literature, Religious Studies, sociolinguistics, and to finding creative ways to relay my ideas to different audiences. I deeply appreciate the process of building more formal, theoretical, or argumentative papers, and I find that they rely on that same ability to think intently, to search for plotholes or counterpoints, and to draw from a variety of sources and references.
The collaborative process of writing is what most excites me about the tutoring process. I love beginning a session with a blank page, and through dialogue and process, ending the session with an outline, some paragraphs, and/or revisions that leave a student feeling confident and excited about the way forward. As a writing tutor with three years of experience. I’m motivated towards helping students find creative solutions to the most difficult essay prompts, admissions essays, and creative and reflective pieces. Writing is a necessarily collaborative process that is only bettered through exchanging ideas with someone else throughout the process. I’d be happy to help students with their writing toward any subject and at any stage of their writing process.
Undergraduate University: Pomona College
Year of Graduation: May 2020
Majors/Minors/Specialization: Major: African Studies, Literature
Year of Graduation:
I graduated Pomona College with a 3.78 GPA. I received a 29 on the ACT, with scores of 35 in Reading and English. In my first year, I received the Office of Black Student Affairs' Outstanding First-Year Student Award, one of two awardees in 2017. In 2018, I was named a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow, one of ten selected annually from the Claremont Colleges, which is home to 5,000+ undergraduate students. For my research on the origins of the Intercollegiate Department of Africana Studies (IDAS), I received the inaugural Library Undergraduate Research Award for Data Visualization in 2018.
For three years, I worked in the Pomona College Writing Center as a Writing Partner and an ID1 (introductory first-year seminar) intern. I worked with an average of 50+ students in a given semester, and I was a writing assistant to multiple classes in subjects ranging from Religious Studies and History to Linguistics and Africana Studies. In my senior year, I was the Head Writing Partner of Training, where I led training for a staff of 47 students on subjects like ESL and multilingual learning, creative writing, disability, and navigating academic relationships and receiving feedback from professors. For the entirety of my Pomona undergraduate career, I volunteered with the Draper Center for Community Partnerships in Claremont, CA for their program Pomona Partners. Pomona Partners is a non-academic mentorship program led by peer mentors/student volunteers. Every Friday we would visit students at Fremont Academy in Pomona, CA, and discuss a range of subjects related to environmental sustainability, identity formation and intersectionality, creative writing, theatre, and family histories.
Philanthropy / Volunteering Experience
I volunteered with students in 7th to 9th grade for four years. As mentioned, at Pomona Partners, we held sessions on a range of non-academic topics relating to personal development. This was a weekly commitment that was very dear to me, and I will always treasure the sessions and the bonds that we had with the students at Fremont Academy.