Hi! My name is Ayonnah Tinsley and I am an 18-year-old freshman at the University of Southern California. This fall, I am majoring in Arts, Technology, and the Business of Innovation under the Iovine and Young Academy (definitely a mouthful, and some people like to think of it as "spicy entrepreneurship").
Ever since a young age, I have always wanted to showcase a kid's perspective on topics adults would tend to overlook. This is why I started YaYaStars as a travel review site when I was 8-years-old. It was a super fun journey running it during the years it operated as a platform where kids can post where they have traveled to or just some of their favorite products. It led me to be on Time for Kids magazine, Huffington Post, and more! Now, I am passionate about bringing STEAM resources to students as it has become such an important aspect of my life over the years.
This is where in August of 2019 I published my first children’s book, “This Is What an Engineer Looks Like”. It is about showing diversity in STEAM (“A” for art) and educating readers on some very important careers in our society using STEAM. For information about my book can be found on an FAQ blog post!
A little bit about me is that I love being involved in clubs and sports! I was a part of Westfield’s BETA Club, National Honor Society, Spanish Honor Society, and a board member on our Student Government Senior Class Board. I was also a member of the Society of Women Engineer’s Teen Advisory board where we help SWE gain a point of view of what teens want to know when going into the field of engineering and STEAM. I was a captain and varsity runner on our track team that has won a national title for our 4x400m at New Balance Nationals Outdoor Championship (2019 under emerging-elite)!!
I also love to volunteer and my favorite place to give my time is the Udvar-Hazy Center (Air and Space Museum). Recently, I have been employed as an Education Specialist there under their Explainers Program. I take my love of science not only to the museum but to local elementary schools as well. I receive invites to talk about the message of my book and demonstrate fun science experiments! I have been demonstrating STEAM workshops at a local elementary school every year for the past five years. One of my goals is to speak at more elementary and middle schools and get STEAM education to be more involved in the curriculum!