On Saturday, April 6th, seniors Sarah Conway, Daniella Fadjoh, Abigail Loranca, and Grace Magnotta participated in Lead Like a Girl: A Conference for Risk Takers and Changemakers at Stuart Country Day School in Princeton, New Jersey. For the past two years, these students created and shaped Sacred Heart Academy Bryn Mawr’s Courageous Conversations program. They were chosen to present in two portions of the conference, with Daniella and Abigail speaking on a panel for teenage leadership and Sarah and Grace sharing information in an expo hall. The all-day event offered inspirational keynote speakers, as well as meaningful panels and workshops.
The students saw the conference as an important way to celebrate their work with Courageous Conversations, which fosters and facilitates student-led dialogue skills. Their passion is worth sharing, as Daniella said “Courageous Conversations has done so much for the girls in our school community. We’re doing good things, and that merits sharing. It also lets people know that we’re working on being able to dialogue as young people who are conscious and want to show compassion.” Through their experiences at the conference, the students had the opportunity to showcase their leadership and also learn from other young female leaders. This exchange of ideas reinforced the importance of Courageous Conversations. Grace noted “I was explaining what our program is to a family and the mother recognized the importance of dialogue, especially in today’s controversial world. She said she was proud of us for creating a place where people can learn how to dialogue and where they can have a safe space to talk about the issues in today’s world.”
When the students finished their presentations, they had the opportunity to attend panel discussions and leadership workshops. They enjoyed seeing what young leaders are doing in their schools. Abby shared “I really enjoyed the showing of diversity and passion in all of the girls at the conference. Getting a chance to interact, learn from, and see other girls’ passions was definitely a highlight of the conference for me.” They were able to talk with some students from other Sacred Heart Network schools as well. The four students confidently represented Courageous Conversations and Sacred Heart Academy Bryn Mawr. Two faculty members, Kerri Schuster and Kelly Weber also attended. At the end of the day, everyone felt empowered and inspired by the work that women and girls are doing. Sarah put it best, as she said “young people, just like us, care about the world around them and want to be involved. There are so many different ways to take your passion and use it to better the world around you.”
Congratulations to Sarah, Daniella, Abigail, and Grace!