Dana Afana '14
by Ashley Hutcherson
Hometown: Novi, Michigan
Education: B.A. in Journalism and Political Science.
Noteworthy: Named Distinguished Student in Journalism by the Department of English Language and Literature.
She’s inspired. Dana Afana, who is currently a Patient Safety Attendant at Providence Park Hospital, finished her reporting internship at The Ann Arbor News in January and was motivated to start a new journey.
While attending EMU, Dana dove into campus organizations. She was a reporter and later made news editor of the Eastern Echo. She was head delegate of the EMU chapter of Model United Nations during the American Model United Nations International Conference. She was also a member the media coordinator of the Middle Eastern Student Association, MESA.
“I felt that it was a different atmosphere than what I was used to,” she said while describing why she chose EMU. “I liked our newspaper, I liked the community and I liked how diverse it is.”
Growing up, Dana prided herself on her knowledge of world affairs, in particular, Palestine. She wanted to shed light on the real issues that happen in the Arab state.
“Since I was a kid, I've watched the news and heard things or saw images of people dying in Palestine,” Dana shared. “So I wanted to do something not just about Palestine, but every population in these situations, or turmoil, that are not getting proper media attention.”
Dana was given the opportunity to write about some of those topics while at the Echo, but during her time at The Ann Arbor News, she reported in many genres of journalism, from investigative news and business to entertainment.
“I was challenged in ways I could not imagine,” said Dana. “And I am very thankful for the staff and editors for pushing me beyond my comfort zone.”
While she has learned to diversify her writing topics, Dana’s strong background and belief system are things she wants to connect in her writing.
“I'm an Arab-Muslim woman going into a field that could potentially change perspectives. My professor Dr. Pinson always said if someone goes into journalism to change the world, they're in the wrong field and should become a politician,” Dana said. “It's not that I am trying to change the world, it's the idea of informing the public with the truth they deserve to know.”
Dana is passionate about world news, and hopes to write about it in the future.