Abbey Moor ’19 and Alex Mallinas ’19 are the faces behind the newly created Instagram “Feminists of TCNJ.” The duo first met at Accepted Students Day this past year; however, they only really became friends during the Summer orientation when they spent the entire day together. Now they are in all the same classes and spend a large portion of their time together.
They both took a class called Gender in Pop Culture, and in this class, they received the inspiration to create an Instagram for Feminists of TCNJ. Their idea initially was to make it a hashtag, but instead decided to make it an Instagram account, and wanted to go for a “Humans of New York type of thing.” So far the account has been successful, as it has featured 18 wonderful profiles of feminists on the TCNJ campus.
Moor and Mallinas believe that the account will have a great impact on the TCNJ community, because it will serve as a “forum for people to share their experiences of activism.” Even if everyone can’t relate to an activists’ specific experience, it will open their eyes to new ideas, which is the overall purpose of the account. Not only has Feminists of TCNJ had a great impact on the TCNJ community, but Abbey and Alex have been changed by their experience of being the faces behind it. Abbey believes she is growing in her feminism “by hearing other people’s experiences because of all the different perspectives that people have,” and Alex states that Feminists of TCNJ has helped her embrace her feminism, “and not be insecure about it.”
Abbey Moor is a freshman special education and women and gender studies double major. She is involved in several campus organizations such as WILL, CCS Mentoring, Prism, and next fall she will be a SAVE Peer Educator and a tutor for HSS. After college, Abbey’s dream is “to move to a city and be a Special Ed teacher in an under privileged school district, and do activism work wherever I end up living.” While Abbey was a feminist before starting school in the fall, she states that her experience at TCNJ has shaped her feminism, “coming from a very small rural town that is very conservative, being in a college community and being surrounded by likeminded people has strengthened my feminism, and given me the opportunity to be outspoken.”
Abbey says that a big part of her feminist agenda is that she wants to make people’s lives better, “because I want people to realize their opinions, experiences, and situations are valid, appreciated and understood.” And although she understands that she has “lofty wishes of change in the world,” she ultimately just wants to make the world happier for other people.
Alex Mallinas is also a freshman special education and women and gender studies double major. She is involved in several campus organizations such as WILL, Environmental Club, and next fall she will be a tutor for HSS. After college, Alex’s dream is to “be a teacher in an inclusive classroom, and teach my students to be feminists from a young age.” Although Alex was also a feminist before she started school in the fall, but she says that she has become a better feminist now, and says “I am more aware of things and have learned a lot from the classes I’m taking, as I feel more prepared to educate people.”
Like Abbey, Alex is from a small town in which she describes as much more liberal than TCNJ, which is why her feminism has been challenged, and she has “encountered a lot of backlash.” However, she has grown more confident in addressing people who challenge her feminist beliefs because of the classes and programs that she is a part of at TCNJ. Alex says that her feminist agenda primarily concerns “spreading awareness and stressing that feminism isn’t a bad thing, and feminist isn’t a bad word.”
There is no telling what is in store for Abbey and Alex in the future! Good luck Abbey and Alex, and never give up on your dreams!