“Empathy is incredibly important. We’d be nowhere in this world if we didn’t help each other out once-in awhile, especially the people who need it the most.”
-Adele Hazan

 
Who is Adele Hazan? She could be described as an eager Chicagoan who loves to warmly explore the city of Austin, Texas. She could be codified as a cover song enthusiast, avid pancake consumer, and Arrested Development fanatic. She could be occupationally defined as the leader of the student communications team at the College Board. But if a few brief descriptions of Adele’s job, interests, and origins can fit into a tweet or two, they certainly cannot contain the things that really matter about a person like her personality, beliefs, or values. Sadly, there seems to be no conjunction of syllables and syntax capable of capturing the essence of these transcendent traits with the lens of language, so this little photograph will have to do.

 
Adele has a special passion for education. As part of her job at the College Board, she works closely with Khan Academy, an online classroom dedicated to serving the global community as a powerful resource of knowledge. Adele, whose admiration for the organization’s mission continues to grow the more she works with them, freely chooses to support their cause outside the office too, because she shares their belief that every person has a fundamental right to education. Despite Khan Academy’s success thus far, she recognizes their work is far from finished and maintains her constant support. Does a mere glance at the kinds of important causes that catch Adele’s focus uncover what constitutes her Adele-ness? Maybe not. But her commitment to education in belief and in action proves Adele is, at the very least, someone with admirable strength in character.

 
So, who is Adele Hazan? Truthfully, only one human being knows the answer to that question, and it’s definitely not the intern typing up this profile in a coffee shop. Strangely, by some cosmic coincidence, anyone can know and predict the behavior of heavenly bodies in the sky just by watching a few videos on planetary motion from Khan Academy’s website; but no amount of reason or rigged methodology will bring an observer any nearer to understanding that mysterious and secluded place seated at the core of a given person. Although we will never truly know each other the way we know Newton’s laws of physics, Adele reminds us that we have a duty to communicate as well as educate. Our capacity to relate to one another is key; as Adele herself puts it, “empathy is incredibly important. We’d be nowhere in this world if we didn’t help each other out once-in awhile, especially the people who need it the most.”

 

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