Janelle was born and raised in Gainesville, Florida. She is a first-generation Tobagonian-American who was raised, alongside her two older siblings, by a loving single mother. She attended Duke University and graduated with honors with a B.A. in Sociology and a minor in Gender, Sexuality, and Feminist Studies.
During her time at Duke, she was heavily involved in advocacy, particularly pertaining to the QTPOC community. She worked at the school’s Center for Sexual and Gender Diversity where she was pivotal in decentering whiteness in the space and uplifting the voices of marginalized communities. Janelle also tutored elementary school students, served as a student liaison, and assisted in developing trainings related to LGBTQIA+ identities. This work, in addition to her scholarly focus on the intersections of race and sexuality-/gender-based communities, solidified her desire toward advocacy and social justice.
After graduating, she served a year as an AmeriCorps fellow with Higher Achievement – DCM, a nonprofit dedicated to bridging the opportunity gap for DC’s underserved youth. During this year, she connected with middle schoolers, running seminars, assisting with homework, and becoming a confidant. She sees this as some of the most impactful work she has done – sparking in her a desire to advocate for marginalized youth.
During her time at Georgetown, she hopes to further her advocacy and better understand the intersections of race and sexuality/gender especially as it pertains to our youth. She’s not sure what direction she’s headed in, but she’s confident in her desire toward juvenile justice and is very excited to discover more about her passions through a Georgetown education.