Humans of SCSU: Urfa Kadeer

Josh LaBellaGeneral Assignment Reporter

Urfa Kadeer knew she wanted to be a writer before she graduated high school.

Kadeer, a junior English major with a concentration in creative writing, said it was something she enjoyed doing enough that she was sure she would to not get tired of it.

“I knew I could survive four years of it,” said Kadeer.

An avid reader since she was young, Kadeer said her passion for writing grew out of her love of reading. She said that she likes writing stories but poetry is her favorite form of writing.

“It’s more fulfilling to write a poem rather than a short story,” said Kadeer.

Spoken word, she said, is her favorite type of poetry. She said she originally got her interest in poetry by watching spoken word poets online.

“I watch a lot of Sarah Kay poetry,” said Kadeer. “I actually got to meet her over the weekend for a trip that I went on for Folio. That was really great.”

Folio is Southern’s art and literary publication, of which Kadeer is the editor. She said she is in charge of constructing the publication and said a lot of what she does is outreach. She said she enjoys telling people how good their work is and asking them to submit it.

“Folio is a celebration of students and what they do,” said Kadeer. “We print one every spring semester.”

As the editor of Folio, Kadeer got to go to Washington D.C. to attend the Association of Writers Programming conference. She said they had panels of writers and students that talked about what they do, their organizations, and different methods of writing.

“It was really great,” said Kadeer. “I learned a lot.”

She is also the president of Bookmarks, Southern’s English club. She said Bookmarks is much more a social group. Students gather for their weekly meeting and talk about the different authors and works they appreciate.

“The club is a bunch of people that love to read and write,” said Kadeer. “We come together and share what we like.”

She said that being an in charge of both clubs was a challenge at first. She started last semester and said she was adjusting to it. Kadeer said people have called her writing style “simple but complicated.”

“I do think I have a style that I am kind of proud about,” said Kadeer.

A Hamden High School graduate, she said her family is one of the main influences on her writing and that she is very close with her siblings and her mother.

“I write a lot about sisters, or a mother and her daughter,” said Kadeer. “I would say I get a lot from my family.”

When she graduates, Kadeer said she either wants to get an MFA, or a masters in social work. She said during her trip for Folio she found a job that was like a blend of those two fields.

“It is a non-profit organization that goes to communities in need and teaches writing workshops,” said Kadeer. “I was like, ‘Oh my god, it’s my dream job! Can I have a job?’”

Kadeer said a good writer is aware of themselves. She said if they are not aware of where they stand as a person it gets hard to delve into characters and make them stand out.

“If you have a good character you will have a good story,” said Kadeer, “because they’ll react in an interesting way in every situation.”

Photo Credit: Jessica Roginski

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