Leaders foster encouragement and global awareness


Laine Cibulskis

Natalie Hua, co-leader of Female Leadership Club (left), and Nadia Freitag, club member (right), discuss the club’s new t-shirts on a Dec. 6 meeting. See teacher Erin McGinnis in room 120 for club information. The club will meet the week of Jan. 13.

Laine Cibulskis, News Editor

Students Natalie Hua and Arianna Burkes approached humanities teacher Erin McGinnis with an idea for a club based on female leadership last year to leave an impact on the student body.

The process took many steps as the initial idea eventually blossomed into a club.

“They [Hua and Burkes] approached me at the end of last year, probably because I talk about feminism passionately. Being a strong female myself, I try to demonstrate that and talk about it, so they had the idea and asked me to be their supervisor,” McGinnis said.

Hua, junior, said, “Arianna and I, who is the co-leader for Female Leadership Club, thought of this our sophomore year. We really wanted to leave an impact on the school, so we had to brainstorm a few ideas of a club we wanted to create and leave behind once we graduate high school.”

“We wanted to do something leadership-based, because that’s something we both feel passionate about. … We thought adding female leadership club made it different, and maybe more girls would join, but we’re now opening it more broad so it doesn’t just have to be girls. It can be girls and boys supporting female and male leadership,” Burkes, junior, said.

McGinnis helped Hua and Burkes throughout the process in multiple ways.

“I’ve helped streamline meetings. They [Hua and Burkes] came to me with this whole outline of what they wanted, and I helped decipher what we wanted in the club. We wanted it to be inclusive, not just for females but for people just generally trying to increase confidence,” McGinnis said.

McGinnis is “a really enthusiastic feminist herself, so I thought that she would contribute to the group. She’s a really good mentor for female leaders,” Hua said.

Club meetings can consist of a quote of the month, TED talk discussions, and conversations about current events related to female leaders.

Additionally, in the works is an idea in which “each member of our Female Leadership Club will present an idea of whatever they want. The purpose of this is to practice their public speaking skills and their presenting skills, so that’s really a big part of our leadership aspect,” Hua said.

“We read a lot of motivational quotes and have discussions of current events. It’s new, and we haven’t had that many meetings, but that’s what it’s been so far. … Leadership, in general, is a lot of what we talk about, and how even younger people can be leaders,” Nadia Freitag, junior, said.

The club motto “Female leadership: the new era of leaders” is a message club that members hope to leave with the student body.

In addition to that, McGinnis said, “We are going to try to learn to love ourselves. We’re trying to make a shirt that says, ‘I radiate positivity and confidence.’ It’s going to be just making ourselves better and more comfortable in our shoes, and not being afraid to speak your mind.”

The club is open to new members.

“You should join the club if you feel passionate about improving yourself, bettering yourself, working on public speaking, finding a good group of friends you can have, and getting comfortable with talking,” Burkes said.

“If you really want to learn leadership skills, or even to get close with people and to have a family, you should join Female Leadership Club,” Freitag said.