On April 8, I had the chance to attend the Confidence Code Conference for Girls. The event was centered around themes from The Confidence Code, a book written by journalists Katty Kay and Claire Shipman. The seminar was remarkable–dozens of politicians, professors, entrepreneurs, athletes, and executives gave their personal testimonies on what it means to be a successful, confident woman. The day was filled with presentations, panels, and even performances.
Not only was I completely starstruck by the speakers, I was really intrigued with what they had to say. At one particular panel, Debbie Phelps (Director of the Education Foundation of Baltimore County Public Schools), Michelle Duguid (Professor at Cornell University), Aundrea Cline-Thomas (Reporter for NBC10), and Hillary Sales (Professor at Harvard University) spoke about the importance of female leadership. They discussed the significance of finding a positive role model and a supportive “squad” of peers. Their conversation was exceptionally inspirational and the panelists’ firm belief in the subject was very empowering.
As the day progressed, we heard from many wonderful speakers, including Mika Brzezinski, co-host of Morning Joe on MSNBC, Rachel Simmons, an expert on the confidence deficiency in young women and a bestselling author, Catherine Pugh, the Mayor of Baltimore, as well as Sharon Price John, the CEO of Build-a-Bear. Each presentation encouraged girls to live up to their potential and to face challenges head-on. The conference closed with a riveting discussion about women in politics, highlighted by an interview with Howard University’s Student Government President, Allyson Carpenter.
The final–and most important–message of the day was to take risks and recognize your competence. This conference helped me realize my self-worth and definitely made me feel (you guessed it!) confident. Thank you, Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital, for giving me the opportunity to attend the Confidence Code Conference. It was fantastic and I’m so grateful for the experience.
-Tara O. Girl Scout Senior, Emmitsburg, MD