Renaissance woman Ruby Veridiano has announced an ambitious new writing program aimed at empowering young Asian-American women in New York City.
Titled “The Glamourbaby Diaries,” Veridiano’s vision became a reality after receiving a grant from the Asian Women Giving Circle (AWGC). The eight-week program utilizes Asian American history and fashion concepts to encourage students to redefine mainstream images of “beauty and elegance” through themes of “strength and social change.”
Born in Manila and raised in Sacramento, Veridiano has traveled the country since 2002 as a sought after speaker, arts educator, poet and writer. She sees her targeted demographic of 14-19 year olds needing a program that melds the importance of history with the modern challenges facing young Asian women.
“My career over the past eight years has been spent as a touring poet, performing artist, and arts educator in universities and high schools across the U.S., primarily speaking on the experiences of Filipina/Asian American women,” she explained. “As a fashion enthusiast and media personality, this new project was born out of my passion to create empowering media for young Asian American girls, where they can find modern and engaging examples to express their beauty, identity and leadership.”
Although her class is directed at young women, Veridiano sees a glaring recent example in the media of an older man who could benefit from Asian studies. Floyd Mayweather drew the ire of many earlier this month when he mocked rival Manny Pacquiao with racially inflammatory rhetoric. He later exacerbated the matter with an apology video featuring two Asian assistants, one Chinese and the other Thai, to show he wasn’t racist. He end the apology by joking that he couldn’t be racist because his gym was in “Chinatown.”
Mayweather’s misguided geography aside, Veridiano is a fan of the sweet science. She quipped that Mayweather now has another Filipino to worry about besides her famed countryman Manny Pacquiao.
“I used to take boxing lessons,” she revealed. “It might be hereditary in the Filipino gene, you know. I may knock him out myself.”
Ruby Veridiano’s “Glamourbaby Diaries” will be held on Saturdays (2Pm-4Pm) from October 9-December 4. The venue is the Urban Word Manhattan, located on 242 W. 27th St. in New York City. Interested participants must sign up at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on Ruby Veridiano, visit http://rubyisill.com/blog/
I often find myself humbled at the blessing of being surrounded by so many talented people. I met Ruby back in 2008 at the A3C Festival, an Atlanta Hip-Hop festival which is the largest in the southeast. Since then we’ve both continued to follow the exciting, and many times arduous paths our gifts take us.
In these two years I’ve witnessed her self-publish her own collection of poetry (Miss Universe), make it to the finals of Alicia Keys’ head blogger contest (“I Am A Superwoman”), and now facilitate her very own education program. The latest accomplishment is the result of a revelation Veridiano received after losing Alicia Keys’ contest.
“I realized that I needed to be on the red carpet instead of behind it,” she concluded.
And let that be an example for us all. Identify a goal, and make it your life until you accomplish it.
And if you read crazy rumors in the next few weeks about a chic Filipina dropping Mayweather at a function, you know who did it.