Whenever I am in an interview, I always get asked variations of the question “Who is your role model?” Whether it be for an internship program, a position on the executive board in a club, or even when doing a simple ice-breaker, this question is one of the most common and yet surprisingly difficult to answer. In this situation, I think to myself and try to find the “role model” that most commonly fills with the position I am trying to fill — I ask myself, “What characteristics does this role model embody that I can later display within my (future) position?” For this question, there are usually many answers. I believe that for myself, and many others, the people that come to mind when recalling role models are family members.
Personally, I oftentimes find myself with a gap in knowledge when trying to find role models outside of my immediate interpersonal-circle. So, considering it is International Women’s Month, I think it would be great to pay homage to some very courageous and important women throughout history.
“When unique voices are united in a common cause, they make history.”
– Gloria Steinam 2013
- Evolved the idea of second-wave feminism
- Became a powerful journalist
- Identified and worked against misogynistic ideals within the workforce
- Promoted civil rights as an impactful activist
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
“Fight for the things that you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”
– Ruth Bader Ginsburg 2015
- First person on both Harvard and Columbia Law Review
- Fought for equal-pay and advocated against discrimination in the workforce
- Founded ACLU’s Women’s Rights Project
- Second woman to serve on the Supreme Court
“You should never view your challenges as a disadvantage. Instead, it’s important for you to understand that your experience facing and overcoming adversity is actually one of your biggest advantages.”
– Michelle Obama 2016
- Wrote a memoir, Becoming, which sold over 10 million copies
- Became the first African American First Lady of the U.S.
- Created the Reach Higher Initiative which empowered young adults to pursue higher education
- Created the Let Girls Learn Initiative which helped girls receive a proper and quality-filled education
These are only a few examples of powerful and successful women throughout our history. Although I could provide more examples, I encourage you to find role models you identify with — especially when it comes to answering tough interview questions. If you are looking for a more in-person experience when discovering more impactful women, I suggest walking around UCF campus and finding the different posters with information on Women’s History Month.
By far, the most interesting and immersive presentation has been the one located inside the main entrance of the John C. Hitt Library. It has panels of important UCF alumnae and their accomplishments to their community and our university. If you are also interested in becoming more knowledgable about Women’s History Month, I have included a link to the National Women’s History Museum where they have free online exhibits. (Personally, my favorite exhibit was “The Women of NASA”!)
National Women’s History Museum Online Exhibits:
Who is your role model?
Is there a woman in leadership whom you feel inspired by?