Athena was born and raised in the Bay Area of California and will graduate with a double major in psychology and art with a graphic design concentration. Since childhood, she has enjoyed expressing her creativity through drawing, writing, and singing. An interest in research and the study of human behavior developed alongside Athena’s creative endeavors. A liberal arts education provided the chance to explore her creative and research interests from an interdisciplinary perspective that informs her work in both graphic design and psychology. After graduation, she plans to pursue further education in psychological science and a career in research and teaching.
Growing up, Athena’s artistic expression served as a form of escapism and self-expression. Training in graphic design emphasized her passion for providing others with escapism in the fantastical and promoting empowerment in one’s identity. Her senior project reflects an interest in encouraging the development of a positive body image and self-esteem among children in a lesson plan designed around an original adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling. As a complement to this work, Athena designed a sex-positive sex education campaign for college campuses emphasizing the celebration of body diversity.
DESCRIPTION OF WORK
The body image and self-esteem lesson plan for children based on Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling consists of the following: a written and illustrated children’s picture book, an infographic, a classroom lesson plan, a coloring pocketbook, and a lesson plan package.
Originally, the project began as an illustrated picture book of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Ugly Duckling. However, it quickly became apparent to Athena that the fairy tale was in need of a reimagined ending. Rather than depict the Ugly Duckling as attaining acceptance by conforming to beauty standards through a physical transformation, the Ugly Duckling embarks on a journey of self-acceptance.