Our College is a significant advocate for the empowerment and advancement of professional women, and we support women of all kinds. We have a female President, Elizabeth S. Marcuse, and approximately 90% of our student body is made up of women.
On March 30, I was thrilled to attend LIM’s Womxn's History Month breakfast, where we spoke to incredibly talented professional women about their struggles and triumphs. These guests provided us with some really good advice, encouraging us to always keep fighting the discrimination that many of us still face today.
This “breakfast” panel was made up of four amazing women. Each spoke about their careers, challenges and perspectives:
- Jessica Andrews is a Fashion Editor at Bustle
- Lori Barr is a Senior Client Partner at Google
- Adrienne Jones, is the founder of the Black Dress exhibition and a professor at Pratt
- Maura Regan is the President of Licensing International
They spoke about many things, some sharing personal stories. For example, Adrienne shared how she was forced to leave certain jobs due to not only gender discrimination she faced there, but racial as well. People wanted to take credit for her work as an artist, and I applaud her for having the courage to stand up for herself and say no.
Lori had to work hard throughout her career to get where she is today. She mentioned that getting her foot in the door was not easy, as she’s in an industry that is mostly made up of men. At first, she felt discriminated against for being young and new to the industry. To ultimately attain a better job later on, she felt she had no choice but to remain in a work environment that affected her mental health. On this subject, Lori said to never stay in a negative working environment, that there are people out there who will respect you and appreciate your work, no matter how young and new you are. I was also very happy when she shared that there are many other women who work with her as a digital strategist at Google!
Jessica, who now works at Bustle, previously worked for Teen Vogue, also as a fashion editor. Growing up, Jessica noticed there didn’t seem to be many people that looked like her who were working as fashion editors. Her goal is to see more representation of black women in the fashion industry.
I asked Maura about how motherhood can be hard if you want to have a full time career. Ever since I was little, I knew I wanted to be a mom, but I never want to put my career on hold to have kids. Maura admitted it's not easy to balance, but that with determination, it’s possible. Working mothers often have a heavier workload because of the many responsibilities they shoulder.
These women have made professional life easier for my generation. They’re actively fighting injustices women face, and I hope to be full of courage just like them. I also hope that gender discrimination will one day be a thing of the past. I am confident in the upcoming generation and our urge to keep addressing those injustices.