Meet the Summer 2018 GENterns!

School may be out for the summer, but our newest interns are just getting started here at the Girl’s Empowerment Network. In this blog post, we want to introduce you to our fabulous and fierce group of gals that will be helping everything run smoothly this summer at GEN.

 

Eleanor White — Project Management Intern

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Eleanor is a rising junior at Tulane University in New Orleans double majoring in International Development and Gender & Sexuality Studies with a minor in Social Innovation and Entrepreneurship (a mouthful, we know).

What’s your favorite part about being a girl?

I love the emotional connection I get to share with other women and how much I get to learn from other women as a result of those connections.

Describe GEN in less than four words and tell us why you picked those words.

“Transforming the future!” – the girls GEN supports are the future and they are going to change the world by simply showing up to the table.

What’s your favorite girl power quote, mantra, TV show, movie, article, source, or song? It can be anything!

I wear mala beads every day and my mantra to live by is “honor the divinity within yourself.”

 

Vivian Lee — Direct Service Intern

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Vivian is a grad student in Texas State University’s MA Clinical Mental Health Counseling program. She is in her third and final year, and has experience working as a Behavioral Health Counselor for Eating Recovery Center and Insight Behavioral Health Center, as well as the Medical Billing Manager at Deep Eddy Psychotherapy, a group practice in downtown Austin.

What are you looking forward to most in your internship?

Learning from the brilliant folks who are working in the office! We come from such diverse backgrounds, I’d love to pick everyone’s minds about their areas of study and experiences.

Who’s your latest #WomanCrushWednesday and why are they GENspirational to you?

Leyna Bloom! She’s on a campaign to be the first trans woman of color on the VS Fashion Show. I first heard about her before I knew she was trans, and she blew me away by how genuine, brave, and gorgeous she was! When I heard that she was speaking out about intersectionality and championing LGBTQ+ representation, I just loved her even more!

What are three qualities you value in a GENspirational person?

1. GENuine! There is nothing more I appreciate than someone who is willing to share and appreciate the fact that no one’s perfect! We all have flaws, strengths, and everything in between.
2. An appreciation for shared humanity. We’re all people trying to navigate through the stormy waters of life. I love individuals who understand that at our core, we’re all made from the same stuff. We all deserve happiness. We all have capability.
3. Willing to follow as well as lead. We often champion the bold, the fearless, and the loudspoken… but the loyal followers, the ones working behind the scenes to make it all happen, are oftentimes just as important. I admire those who can be flexible and understand that sometimes we should lead, and sometimes we should follow.

 

Saskia Holman — Pathfinder and Direct Service Intern

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Saskia is a rising sophomore at Bryn Mawr College, which is a women’s college outside of Philadelphia. She is undeclared in her major, but is leaning towards Public Health. Saskia has been involved at GEN for years, having attended a We Are Girls Conference. Her younger sister has been involved with the Pathfinder Summit and the Youth Advisory Board, so it was a natural fit for Saskia to come on board as an intern.

What advice do you have for your middle school self?

Love yourself! You are smart, you are strong, you are loved, and you are enough! 

If you could take a road trip with one GENcredible person (past or present) who stands for gender justice & female empowerment, who would it be and why?

Ruth Bader Ginsburg! I would love to hear her stories firsthand. I’m inspired by her dedication to women’s issues, and her strength (both emotionally and physically–she can still do push ups!)

Describe GEN in less than four words and tell us why you picked that phrase/word(s)

I would describe GEN as passionate, GENerous, dedicated, and inclusive
I think the organization has worked so hard to expand access to its services. GEN’s aim is to take over the world with its mission of female empowerment. The people who work at GEN are incredibly dedicated and passionate, but they are also some of the kindest people I have ever met.

 

Isabella Judge — Pathfinder and Communications Intern

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Isabella is a rising junior at St. Edward’s University here in Austin, just down the street from the GEN office. She is a Communications major with a concentration in Public Relations and Advertising with a minor in Catholic Studies. She is also a tour guide with Lone Star Riverboat on LBJ Lake and works as a Barre Fitness Instructor at the St. Edward’s Recreation and Wellness Center.

What are you looking forward to most in your internship?

I am definitely looking forward to creating meaningful relationships with the girls at Pathfinder, and imparting some wisdom from my own college experience. I am also really excited to be pulling social media content and writing blog posts this summer to keep everyone updated about the amazing things girls and women everywhere are accomplishing.

Who’s your latest #WomanCrushWednesday and why are they GENspirational to you?

Emma Watson for sure! She is so outspoken and passionate about the gender wage gap, women’s rights, and education. I’ve been watching her forever as Hermione in Harry Potter and so to see her transform into this amazing role model has been really great. 

What’s your go-to self care method? 

Recently, I picked up crocheting and am struggling through learning the different stitches and working towards completing my first project, a potholder. I have a very strong memory of being young and not being able to figure out how to make one of those stretchy loom loop potholders and crying because (and I quote directly) “if I can’t make a potholder, how can I do anything?” Now that I know that I can, in fact, do anything, I might as well make a potholder, right?

 

Makenna Brandt — Community Relations Intern

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Makenna is a rising junior at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee. She is majoring in International Studies with a minor in French. Makenna first got involved with GEN her junior year of high school, and has been a consistent volunteer ever since.

What advice do you have for your middle school self?

I wish that I could go back in time and give my middle school self a hug; I really do. Middle school is a very difficult and strange time because it is such a transitional phase. Now that I know where I end up in the future, and who I have become, I want to go back and tell middle school Makenna that she doesn’t have to be so scared. I wish that I could alleviate some of the worry and anxiety and stress that I know she feels every day by assuring her that things really do have a way of working out for the best.

What do you think is the most important issue facing girls and women today? How can we GENspire the girls of tomorrow to contribute to a solution?

The most important issue facing women and girls today is their inaccessibility to education. Across the board, women and girls are more likely to be excluded from education and have lower school life expectancy rates. By encouraging girls to complete their education and valuing their education as much as we do for boys, we can start a cycle of girls becoming and educated and going on to encourage the next generation of girls to do the same.

What’s your favorite girl power quote? 

“Girls, if boys say something that is not funny, you don’t have to laugh.” -Amy Poehler

 

Andie Duong — Development Intern

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Andie is a third year student at the University of Texas at Austin working towards a B.F.A. in Dance and a B.A. in Urban Studies.

What’s your favorite part about being a girl?

Getting to prove people wrong.

What three qualities do you look for in GENspirational people?

Passionate, mindful, and spirited

What’s your favorite girl power movie?

A League of Their Own

 

Rose Miller — Development Intern

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Rose just finished her second year at UT Austin. She is double majoring in Arabic and Anthropology while also pursuing a teaching certificate. Rose started her own feminist organization at her high school which led her to get involved with GEN. She has been a previous member of the Youth Advisory Board and an active GEN volunteer.

Who’s your latest #WomanCrushWednesday and why are they GENspirational to you?

I recently watched the new documentary about Ruth Bader Ginsburg and I am so amazed by her. Her rhetorical abilities, work ethic, and class are beyond compare, and they have made her one of the single most effective agents of change history has ever seen.

Do you have a favorite GEN program, icebreaker, or event?

I have volunteered at the We Are Girls conference the last three years in a row, and I always come away feeling so invigorated by the energy there. I love seeing the excitement of the young participants as well as meeting the inspiring leaders who come together to make WAG happen.

What advice do you have for your middle school self?

Your social development is as important as, if not more important than, your academic achievement. Give yourself a break, and make some friends.

Zoe Copus — Direct Service Intern

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Zoe is a third year psychology major at Texas State University. Her cousin, Sidney Copus, is a Program Manager here at GEN and introduced her to programs that inspire “confidence, power and leadership.” Zoe is serving this summer as a Pathfinder Intern as well as a Direct Service intern.

Who’s your latest #WomanCrushWednesday and why are they GENspirational to you?

Tracee Ellis Ross! Her confidence and fashion sense are unparalleled.

Describe GEN in four words and tell us why you picked them.

Passionate, caring, fun, and thriving. It’s impossible not to notice the passion that every person has; everyone cares so much about what they do and that’s a big reason why working here is amazing. I aways hear someone laughing or being silly, and it makes being here fun. It’s not just a work place but a place of enjoyment! Thriving because that’s what’s always happening here. There is this constant growth to be better, learn more, provide more.

What advice do you have for your middle school self?

Relax! You’ll become more confident and those braces aren’t forever, girl! And stop tweezing your eyebrows; you don’t know what you’re doing.

Felicia Gonzalez