Advice for Young Girls Looking for A Way Out
Life Isn’t Fair: It’s a statement of fact. And while you should fight for fairness and equality, you’re best served personally by understanding this truth. Whether because you’re black, Latina, a woman, physically challenged, or poor, there will be reason for people to root against you.
Commit Yourself to Excellence: Given life isn’t fair, commit yourself to being the very best. We will not make it to the mountaintop, the top of the class, or the executive suite by just “getting by.” We get there by excelling and outperforming. It starts now.
Thirst for Knowledge: Read your local and national newspapers. Become aware of the issues in your neighborhood, your community, and the world around you.
Get Involved: What are you passionate about? What do you see in the world around you that you’d like to change? Join the student council, student clubs, debate club, advocacy organizations, and political organizations.
Go to College: Not graduating from high school is like questioning gravity – useless. Going to college is like breathing – necessary for basic survival. It doesn’t matter if it’s a four-year school or community college. Money is always an issue. But committing yourself to excellence will make it easier to get grants, scholarships, and other assistance.
Move Beyond Your Comfort Level: Just because no one in your family or your neighborhood has never done it before doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. Study a foreign language. Study abroad.
Let Your Circumstances Fuel You Forward, Not Hold You Back: If you grew up poor, let it inspire you to provide financial security for your family. If you grew up with someone telling you you can’t, show them (and yourself) that you can.
Protect Your Brand (Reputation):Facebook, MySpace, Twitter and Email are great tools for networking and social media. However, the ease at which you can share your life with the world can be detrimental to your reputation. Your momentary “oversharing” of pictures, personal experiences, and youthful indiscretions live on forever on the Internet. Potential employers, organizations, and other inquiring eyes just need to Google to find out what you would rather forget.
Don’t Get Pregnant: It is tough enough in this world alone, even harder as a child raising a child. Protect yourself. These days sex is more about life and death, and less about trying not to get pregnant. You have two choices: don’t have sex or don’t have unprotected sex.