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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Millersville chapter.

Speaking in public is a skill I have avoided working on for a long time. The thought of presenting my ideas while standing in front of a group of people always left my heart beating a little too fast. Even after taking a public speaking class, I still felt confused as to why public speaking was something so intimidating to me. 

It wasn’t until I decided to make it a goal of mine to overcome my anxieties. As a (super) senior in college, I figured there would be no better time for me to develop this skill before I move on to bigger, more professional audiences. 

For my internship, I recently stood in front of a class to run a workshop about editing practices. Walking into the classroom, I felt my heart starting to race. There was a sea of eyes watching me as I spoke about my role, my suggestions, my thoughts. Trying not to let my voice crack, I reminded myself that I didn’t have to do this presentation alone. I was fortunate to have two other great interns with me. Even if I were presenting alone, it was grounding to remind myself that there are people in my life who believe in me. 

After the 30 minute workshop, I walked out of the classroom standing a little taller. I had successfully given a presentation to a group of my peers. When I read the feedback on a survey about the workshop, it was incredibly rewarding to know my ideas about editing were not only received, but appreciated.

Once I began my internship this semester working for an academic journal, I suddenly had weekly opportunities to face my fears. I’ve always liked the idea that if there is something you want to achieve but are feeling scared, it’s okay to do it scared. It’s okay to have some anxiety and uncertainty about the outcome. What really matters is doing your best. I believe in showing up to an intimidating opportunity with dedication to give your best effort. Regardless of the outcome, you can walk away at the end of the day knowing you gave it your strongest try.  

If you share the same kind of fears that I do about public speaking, know that it is never as serious as we think it is. We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to speak eloquently, without stuttering or slipping up. If we always have the expectation of perfection, we will often find ourselves facing disappointment. Instead, reframing public speaking to a public conversation has helped me ease my fears. How can we fail at a conversation? It is a simple engagement of ideas from one person to another (or a few). 

Speak with passion. Talk about things you care about. Find confidence in your intelligence. While it’s easier said than done, fear is worth challenging. We are so often stronger than we believe ourselves to be. 



Aimee Feuda

Millersville '23

Aimee is a senior Science Writing major at Millersville University. She is passionate about music, social justice, and mental health. Her interests include art, makeup, and attending live music.