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10 Inspirational Women and Their Powerful Advice

  1. Eleanor Roosevelt was not only the First Lady during her husband’s four terms as President but also a U.S. Delegate to the United Nations and a human rights advocate. In fact, she overcame extreme shyness to become a powerful, public figure that supported women in the workforce and the downtrodden in society.
  2. Marie Curie was a Nobel Prize-winning physicist and chemist who discovered the elements radium and polonium as well as coining the term “radioactivity.” She was the first person to suggest using radiation to treat cancer, and she was a tireless fighter against the prejudice women in the sciences encountered.
  3. After overcoming her father’s objections and the general disdain of her male peers, Mary Cassatt became a widely celebrated and respected Impressionist painter who depicted meaningful moments in women’s lives.
  4. Katharine Hepburn epitomized confidence, independence, self-reliance, and gumption- all characteristics women at her time were not expected to embody. Not to mention she established the trend of trousers for women and won four Best Actress Oscars, a record still in existence today.
  5. Toni Morrison is a winner of the Pulitzer Prize and the first female African-American to win the Nobel Prize for Literature. Her novels address the challenging issues of racism and gender inequality in a powerful and impactful way.
  6. Wangari Maathai is the first environmentalist and first African woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize. She was beaten and then jailed, because of her role as a leader of Kenya’s democracy movement but has continuously encouraged women to plant trees, so that jobs can be created for the poor and deforestation and erosion can be prevented.
  7. Nellie Bly pioneered investigative journalism by going undercover as a patient at a mental institution and producing a scathing expose on the wretched conditions and patient abuse that were present in insane asylums. Ultimately, Bly’s writing led to reforms in and funding for the treatment of people suffering with mental illnesses. The New York Evening Journal later called her the “best reporter in America.”
  8. Edith Warton’s novels examined women’s roles in society as well as highlighting class and gender conflict and social hypocrisy. Essentially, her astute observation skills provided us with fabulous reads.
  9. Madame CJ Walker created a line of beauty products for fellow African-American woman, building a company that employed around 3,000 female workers. In addition, she is believed to the first female billionaire in the United States.
  10. Wendy Kopp is the founder of Teach for America; she developed the idea as her senior thesis while at Princeton. Since then, Teach for America has trained more than 24,000 teachers and provided education to over 3 million children. Kopp truly is the perfect example of one woman making a monumental impact on the world. 
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Evan Grogan

Holy Cross

Evan Grogan is a senior at the College of the Holy Cross who is studying abroad for the year at the University of St Andrews. She is an English and Art History double major and eventually hopes to attend graduate school for journalism and write for The New York Times. When Evan is not busy with school and writing for both Holy Cross' newspaper and Her Campus, she loves to read; go for runs; and spend time with her friends. She is obsessed with the color navy, rainbow sprinkles, and anything involving glitter. 
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