Women warriors: students reflect on Women’s History Month

Hadley Carr

March is well known as the month of March Madness, St. Patrick’s Day, and recently, the start of the coronavirus closure. But perhaps one of the most important and least-celebrated events of March is Women’s History Month. While Wilson doesn’t specifically plan any Women’s History events, many students will be celebrating women throughout this month. 

Sophomore Henry Cohen chooses to celebrate Harriet Tubman, as she’s “been someone a lot of people could look up to as not only being able to escape whatever bad situation you’re in but also being able to help others from that point.” Similarly, junior Sam Marks looks up to many well-known women, such as Aretha Franklin, Harriet Tubman, Gloria Steinem, Alice Walker, Toni Morrison, and Queen Elizabeth. He says that these women have all “made incredible advancements to the expansion of women’s rights and independence.” 

Freshman Rigby Zentner looks up to her mother and grandmother, but also looks up to politician Nancy Pelosi and activist Malala, adding that all these women bear the same qualities in that “they have done amazing things that have not only helped me, but the world. They empower women and inspire me to follow in their footsteps.”

Freshmen Josie Diggs-Galligan and Sofia Londono are inspired by members of their family and choose to commemorate these women in March. Diggs-Galligan will celebrate her mother this month given that “she grew up in a difficult time for women yet, from a young age, she worked through the challenges to be able to have equal opportunities in all aspects of her life.” The first example of Diggs-Galligan’s mother’s independence is one from when she was in elementary school. She said that “the boys could apply to be [crossing guard] patrols and the girls could be ‘lunch aids.’” Her mother, being the oldest of four siblings, felt that she had the responsibility to become a patrol. Unfortunately, there had never been a female on patrol so “she had to go talk to the principal to ask special permission. ” After her principal’s rejection, Diggs-Galligan’s mother wrote a letter to the board of education and she became the first female patrol at Lafayette Elementary, her friends quickly following in her footsteps. 

Similar to the independence and courage of Diggs-Galligan’s mother, Londono chooses to celebrate many of her female family members who “take jobs that are meant to be for men and defy gender stereotypes”. 

From celebrities to family, Wilson students are certainly celebrating women during March. And students have ideas about ways for Wilson to better honor women. Diggs-Galligan proposed for lessons to be taught about the “powerful women in the past and how we can continue to carry on their legacy,” while Marks believes that Wilson should hold “performances in the atrium displaying female empowerment and acknowledging famous figures through morning announcements. ” Cohen agreed that Wilson should have more events. Though Women’s History Month will end on March 31, these women and so many more should continue to be celebrated throughout the year.