Name: Aishatu Jummai Alfa (My first name is pronounced “i-shat” and my middle name means I was born on Friday. I go by Aisha.)
Profession: Actor, Comedian and Writer
My favourite emoji is: I use Bitmoji so now my Aisha avatar can annoy my friends and family when I text them. Much more personal!
The background photo on my cell phone is: Artist Ai Wei Wei’s sculpture Grapes
The last thing I Googled was: How to bake parmesan brussel sprouts.
If I were to change professions, I would be: A flight attendant so I could fly cheaply, wear a silk scarf around my neck and drink tiny bottles of vodka.
The greatest challenge of my career has been: Saying no to opportunities. It’s the best career strategy tool I’ve ever known and also one of the hardest. It has helped me focus and get better and faster at the things I love most.
The thing I remember most about being a student is: Playing for the U of A Pandas Soccer Team (National Champs 2001!). It was like finding a new family after moving from Winnipeg to Edmonton. We are all still friends to this day.
One piece of advice I'd give a current student is: The things you learn at university shouldn’t all be from a book.
Would you rather have to say what's on your mind at all times or never be able to speak again? Saying what I think is what people pay me to do as a comedian!
My pop culture best friend would be: Eartha Kitt. Not pop culture?! Who carrrrrrres! (said in Eartha’s Cat Woman voice)
The worst job I've ever had was: Working at the Banana Boat ice cream shop. Bananas make me gag and they were the “decoration” at the shop. But I did get all the free ice cream I wanted!
The game show I would be best at is: Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego
On the day I graduated, I wish I'd known: You have to pay your parking tickets to get your diploma. I walked across stage and was handed a brown envelope. Hi Mom & Dad!
Sushi or Noodles? I love LOVE noodles! I lived in Asia for four years and was in love with noodles for breakfast, lunch and dinner. One day I hope to be buried in a pile of noodles in a pod that orbits the sun.
My favourite city is: Montpellier in southern France. I studied there for a while and it’s so laid back even the way they speak French is relaxed.
The one habit I'm trying to break is: Going to bed without flossing. It takes 40 seconds and will preserve my chompers. JUST DO IT AISHA!
The last book I read was: Born a Crime by Trevor Noah. An outstanding read that confirmed my love for Trevor and also made me adore his mother.
The most defining moment in my career was: When I said no to becoming a flight attendant to take on a hosting job for an online lifestyle channel in Winnipeg.
The one way I have changed for the better is: Ohhh, there are so many! But the one people notice most is I let my natural curly afro grow now. It’s glorious and reflects who I am: sassy, natural and making up space.
I started feeling like a grown-up when: I’m sure I’ll feel like a grown up some day?!
The daily habit that contributes to my success is: Laughter! Laughing is great for everyone mentally, spiritually and physically and it’s totally universal. I engage in a hearty “ha ha ha” multiple times every day for my health.
After I die, I want to be remembered for: Touching people’s lives and always being kind. I think that is one of the most important things I try to do with my life.
My preferred Hogwarts house is: Hufflepuff — mostly because it sounds like a disgruntled four-year-old, which is my spirit animal.
My first job after graduation was: Youth program co-ordinator in Boyle, AB. It was an awesome first job and the village of Boyle has a good personality.
The item I never leave the house without is: The necklace given to me by my father. It has a golden pendant of Africa with a giraffe on it and a “hero” pendant designed by Canadian jeweler Hilary Druxman. I’m a proud Nigerian-Canadian woman and I want my roots close to my heart at all times.