Speaker: Sarah Prevette, Founder & CEO, Future Design School
Why is Women’s History Month/International Women's Day important to you? How are you celebrating?
Sarah Prevette: Women's history Month is an important event to highlight some of the forgotten women of history and to help spotlight all of the incredible contributions that women have made and continue to make across virtually every industry. Whether it's health care or transportation or energy, communication, education, aerospace, the contributions really are endless. It's personally important to me that we ensure that every young person sees that gender isn't a barrier to innovation or having personal impact. And I think we all have a role that we can play in spotlighting the often overlooked contributions of women, to celebrate what women have accomplished and recognize the great work that women are doing around the world every day. And help inspire girls to see themselves as capable changemakers.
International Women's Day's theme is #EmbraceEquity. How do you think we can work together to impact positive change?
Sarah Prevette: I love that the theme of this year's International Women's Day is "embrace equity". I think it's so important that we talk about intersectionality and recognize that various forms of inequality can actually compound discrimination. I think we also need to have a really honest viewpoint and conversation about history and really recognize the historic oppression that has affected so many and commit ourselves to working together to combat bias stereotypes and just obliterating any barriers as we find them. The reality is that we can't fight gender injustice without first recognizing the nuanced needs of all vulnerable communities.
What advice would you give to the next generation of women as they begin their careers?
Sarah Prevette: The advice I give to the next generation of women is stay hungry. Don't fall prey to intimidation. Don't fall prey to self doubt. Don't let microaggressions stop you from making yourself heard. Aim for the highest peaks and know that while change is frustratingly slow, and I hear you, I have already seen positive change throughout my career. And I'm just so excited and thrilled to see the social justice movement continue to gain strength with all of the young people today. The only additional advice, I guess I'd have is find your champions. Find people who will take the time to provide advice, help make connections, help support you in achieving whatever your aspirations may be. Find women who have blazed the trail before you and don't be afraid to ask for help. I think the reality is that all of us owe our success to those who have gone before us and finding those people who can champion you and help pick you up when you're down makes a world of difference.