Born in North Carolina to two Taiwanese immigrants, during which I evolved from chubby baby to chubby toddler, a fact that my body has been trying to deny ever since.
Grew up in Silicon Valley, where the senior pastor of my church gave sermons using flow charts.
Got report cards in elementary school that described my propensity to help others by stating, “Karen is easily distracted and needs to focus on her own work.”
Was briefly obsessed with Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli, a book that taught me the value of being weird.
Went to a school made infamous by the Wall Street Journal for “white flight“ because of the ultra-competitive academic atmosphere created by Asian immigrants.
Earned a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology at the set of Zoey 101, while alternating between valiantly suffering the glare of an ocean view and locking myself in a windowless lab.
Worked in youth ministry, which is code for “crash course in making vats of chili” and “the singular endeavor in which your credit card will be charged more than $100 for movie tickets.”
2012-2013 practicum student at SAGE Metro St. Louis working with Sherrill Wayland, who is a rock star.
2013-2014 contextual education student at Faith Aloud working with Rev. Rebecca Turner, who is a powerhouse.
2014-2015 practicum student at Jobs with Justice.
2015-present practicum student at St. Louis Psychiatric Rehabilitation Center
Hobbies include infosnacking, spending too much time on Youtube and talking to strangers.
Friends educate me on cinema (I haven’t even watched the Wizard of Oz) and humor my love for obscenely long walk talks.
I am easily bribed with chocolate (fair trade preferred).
Karen Yang, MSW/MDiv ’16. Interests are communications, cultural competency education, and faith-based anti-racist organizing. Experience in advocacy for LGBTQ older adults, reproductive justice, and home care workers, as well as direct practice with clients with severe mental illness. Skills include writing op-eds, creating social media content, pastoral care, preaching, and community organizing.