Women’s History Month

Womens History Month

Over the last hundred years, women across the world have taken strides toward a bright future in the advancement of their rights. From suffrage to Title IX to breaking through the wage gap, fierce females across generations have worked hard to provide opportunities for the next generation of girls.
From fictional to real-world female role models, the evolution of women in the spotlight has sparked the empowerment of others universally. Disney princesses such as Mulan, Elsa and Moana teach young girls independence and courage; activists such as Malala, Rosa Parks, and Howard County’s Student Member of the Board Abisola Ayoola prompt girls to advocate for and get involved in important issues.
In speaking on her own female role models, junior Christy Lee explained the important influence of certain female role models such as Sandra Day O’Connor.
“She was the first woman on the supreme court…[while she had] so many barriers that she had to face along her way,” Lee said.
According to National Geographic, the first real advancement in women’s suffrage took place “on December 10, 1869, [as] the Wyoming territorial legislature granted women the right to vote and to hold public office.”
Without the passage of such laws, O’Connor would never have had the opportunity to champion to resolve pressing policy issues, or even be involved in governmental affairs. On a national stage, progressive actions honor women’s hard work and perseverance which inspires young girls to pursue social advocacy, interesting careers or challenging academic ventures.
However, not all female role models are famous or well-known. Some are simply friends, family members or neighbors.
Lee commented that one of her role models is her mom.
“She came to America as an immigrant from Korea, so she had to basically set up her own life here all by herself,” Lee explained.
Leaving a life that is so well known is challenging to say the least; however, qualities including strength and courage are what have helped women over the centuries determine the direction of their future. Such qualities can be hard to acquire when facing challenges and adversity; however, the hardest choices are the ones that exemplify these attributes best in a role model and inspire younger generations.
Additionally, senior Katie Boyle states her belief that the qualities of a strong woman are “confidence [and] kindness.” According to Boyle, even simple everyday actions such as, “talking to people…in a way that shows me they care about me,” are a way for women to embody the qualities of a modern heroine.
Several clubs at Marriotts Ridge take part in celebrating women, including the She++ club, which highlights the role of women in STEM projects as they practice encoding and computer technology skills.
Too often women are marginalized into believing that only certain career paths are available to them while not realizing that other jobs such as engineering or computer science are within a limitless realm of possibilities. Clubs such as these provide opportunities for girls to take chances and expand their exploration of activities they find interesting.
Another club advocating for women’s rights is the Equality Now Period club which sheds light on issues related to feminine hygiene.
According to Alliance for Period Supplies, “One in four people struggle to purchase period supplies due to lack of income.”
Various struggles people face in gaining access to these necessities are because of what some like to call the tampon tax which, when applied, advertises the tampon as a luxury rather than a basic health-related product.
While for some it may be difficult to get access to feminine hygiene products, the Equality Now Period club provides easy access to these essentials, ensuring that women and girls at MRHS can go about their daily life without interruption.
Women’s History Month helps the world recognize and celebrate the legacy and accomplishments of women of the past as well as encouraging the continuation of progress in the advancement of women’s rights in the future.