Here at 6 Nerdy Chicks, we value and appreciate the women who came before us to help to break down gender barriers. Nerd Herstory will be a monthly segment that will honor the history and success of women in the nerd realm who have allowed us to openly embrace the true geeks we are today.
As 2018 approaches, we are generally asked about our goals for the new year. This coming year, I want to think about those who are not as fortunate, or those who do not have the same opportunities I have. My inspiration for this has been the wonderfully strong women who have been expressing themselves in 2017. One of those women not only impacted our inner humanitarian, but really inspired the female nerd.
Emma Watson is a wonderful person. She played one of the more iconic women of our generation, and she used that fame to try and make a difference in the world. At just 11 years old, she was picked for the role of Hermione, and none of us would ever be the same. After 10 years of filming, Watson wanted more than her acting career and decided to continue her education. First, she enrolled in Brown University, then like a boss lady transferred to Oxford University while finishing the Potter films. She did transfer back to Brown where she graduated with a degree in English in 2014.
While in college, Emma focused on children’s poverty, child marriage, and gender equality. She donated money and items for auction in order to help fund different projects. In 2011, she auctioned off a signed copy of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows to help support those affected by tragedy or a humanitarian crisis. I don’t know about you, but when I was in college, I could barely handle working and classes, let alone funding humanitarian projects.
In 2012, Watson enhanced her awesomeness and was named the Camfed Ambassador. Camfed is an organization which strives to provide education for girls in rural or poor areas. During Emma’s time as ambassador, the organization focused on sub-Saharan Africa where 24 million girls can not afford to go to school. Also under Camfed, Watson worked on the JustOneThing camping which gives young girls the supplies they need in order to be successful in school.
In 2014, Emma was named the United Nations Women Goodwill Ambassador. This organization focuses on gender equality and female empowerment. She helped launch the HeForShe Campaign which strives to empower men to speak up for women and make a change, especially in the areas of equal pay for women and strengthening the role of the father in the home.
Emma is not yet a historical figure, but I thought I’d fast forward as she is bound to be a role model for future women. She has inspired me as well as so many other women who want their voices heard. By backing influential organization that have been meaningful to her, she had impacted a younger generation of females (and males) to take actions and let their voices be heard. In more recent years, she has started a female focused book club on Goodreads called Our Shared Shelf which lists a new book every month or two. The site is great because you can express and discuss your thoughts thoughts with other readers in the virtual book club. These books focus on women and self empowerment, and are a great way to enhance your personal journey into the new year! If you are lucky you might just find one of these books in a random location as Emma is known for hiding her book club books around different cities!
Ways to get involved in 2018
The links below lead to some great organizations doing amazing things for women.
Amy Poehler’s Smart Girls