Every Girl Needs a Role Model

Sarah Clancy ’20, Guest Columnist

In 5th grade I was asked to write a persuasive essay on why ______ was my role model in life.  If I recall correctly, I think I picked Mother Theresa – which was a bit of a cop out because I had to use her for another project anyway.  As I have grown up, I have come to realize that I have so many role models in my life who are right in front of my face.  While I am the luckiest girl to have so many strong and intelligent women in my life, there are two specific women that come to mind.  Not only have they shown me how to be a stand-up kick-ass, take-no-bullsh*t young lady, but they did it in a way that made me wish every young girl I have ever met got to have them as role models too.   

  The first is my mom.  Yes, obvious, I’m sure, but all those times that she was taking away my phone, locking me out of the computer, or dragging me to basketball practice, she was teaching me several lessons.  First, not to be a pain in the ass, although, I am still having a hard time working that one out.  Second, was to learn self-control and that there are bigger things in life than texting my 7th grade boyfriend back (thank you, that was a bust).  And third, perhaps the thing that has stuck with me in every instance of my life, was the simple sentence she fed me when I had to go to practice, “Come on, Sarah, you can do ANYTHING for just 2 hours.” That sentence has gotten me through so many classes, lectures, meetings, group projects, and other places I generally dreaded being, and for that I am endlessly grateful. 

  My second most obvious role model, is my mom’s sister – the woman I am living with whenever I’m not living with my parents.  Every summer for as long as I could remember, I have lived with my aunt Lisa in Williamstown, MA on our farm.  She taught me to ride horses, plant a garden, throw hay, interact with people of all ages, and define my competitive spirit and unwavering work ethic.  Her selflessness, generosity, and willingness to give people a second chance are arguably some of the best qualities you can find in a human.  In the horse industry there is a lot of dishonesty and many shortcuts that can be made to increase profits.  In Lisa’s world, dishonesty and shortcuts simply do not exist, something she learned from her mom and dad, two of the most genuine people you can think of.   

  Lisa’s big claim to fame with raising me was that giving up on something is never an option, and the only way to do anything was to do it honestly and fairly.  She has been a strong believer in giving people a second chance, and making sure everyone gets their turn in whatever way that may manifest itself.   

  Thanks to these two stand up women, I have found myself gravitating towards people of the same caliber, creating an incredible network of support in my life.  If it wasn’t for the fundamental lessons they taught me in life (millions more than are in this article), I would not be in a position to try and be the same kind of woman for someone else.  Every single person needs a role model, and they could be closer than you think.