Rowan Collins was born and raised in Oakland. She left The Bay for college but had to come right back. To her, there’s no other place in the world where one can find “a little bit of everything.” Any type of person, food or pastime seems possible. One of Collins favorite pastimes are strolls around Lake Merritt with her dog Persephone who sat politely while we spoke.

“I love almost everything about The Bay,” said Collins. “I work as a medical assistant in a COVID clinic, so life is chaos, but I like to come out to the lake and just, you know, forget everything.” 

Collins’s work as a medical assistant isn’t glamorous. People are not always kind to her, but helping people and making a difference motivates her to continue. It’s the attitude that she gets from both of her parents who also work in the medical field. 

“My dad’s a doctor, my mom’s a dietician and they’re both obsessed with their jobs,” Collins said. “They say, ‘I don’t care how much money I make. Even if we’re going broke, I’m going to keep doing this to help people.’ And that’s inspired me. That’s what I’m doing. Like I’m dirt poor working as a medical assistant at COVID clinic, but I love it because we’re helping people.”

Collins looks out for strangers at work, but is also the protector among her group of friends. She’s fairly tall and has no problem being confrontational and making decisions. Collins’s friends are appreciative, but being the assertive one can get exhausting at times and she relies on her boyfriend at home for comfort. 

“They definitely make sure that I don’t feel like I’m being used,” Collins said. “But when I get home I’m like, ‘can you bring me a glass of water? Can you tuck me in?’”