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A lot of things have made me the strong, empowered person I am today. A lot of my determination, confidence, and persistence came from strong women I had as role models growing up. Whether it was people I know, famous people, or people who didn’t really exist at all; they all influenced me to be the person I am today. 

The first people to ever have a strong impact on my life were my mom and grandma. I’m talking about them together because I can’t pick one first over the other. Both of these women taught me what it means to be independent and strong. They both helped me realize I am important and never needed to change for anyone. They were my first cheerleaders and forever will be. 

My second grade teacher was responsible for making me the student I am today. She was one of the first people to show me that if I tried I could succeed, and that I was smart despite what anyone wanted to think. She taught me how to work hard and strive for my goals. She was definitely my first driving force toward becoming a teacher. 

My eighth grade math teacher was not only the best teacher I ever had, but was also an amazing person to confide in. We got close after I had her as a teacher, and she has continued to teach me about persistence as well as finding the potential in everyone. She is the reason I want to be a math teacher. 

There are strangely two First Ladies I admired growing up. Jackie Kennedy and Eleanor Roosevelt were always two women I adored when I was little. Both of them portrayed strength and power. They were not just pieces placed next to their husbands for show, but their own independent and confident individuals. They worked so hard to try and help a world where women had to own their place, which presented them with challenges and hardships. 

The last woman I admired is a figurative woman that portrays a greater concept. For some reason I looked up to Rosie the Riveter growing up. Even though she wasn’t a real woman, she portrayed strength and determination in a male-dominated world. She showed that women had skills and could work. She proved that women could take their spot in the world. When so many women were suppressed, Rosie showed the women of the world that they too could be anything a man was. 

Julianne is a Senior at Adelphi University. She is a mathematics major in the STEP education program. She is apart of the Active Minds, Her Campus, GSA, and Future Teacher's Association clubs at her university. She likes everything Disney and in her free time likes to write and do photography.
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