Tell us about you and your organization!
Hi! I’m Hayley, a member of the Girltelligence College Leadership Board. I’m a rising senior at the University of Michigan and I work as a beta-tester, moderator, and now intern for Girltelligence! One of the best ways for a girl to get support is to talk with her girlfriends, but many find it hard to make genuine connections with other girls. The Girltelligence app was created with the intention of helping girls have real conversations, advise and support one another, and create a platform to form a safe and bully-proof community where girls can be their authentic selves. Think of it as a big sisterhood or peer-mentorship app that’s safe and fun. Girltelligence offers many functions; one of the most popular is the Girl Talk section, where girls can ask and answer questions other girls may have. The topic can range from fun questions, like an embarrassing moment, to serious questions about relationships.
Why do you think it’s important for your generation to let their voices be heard?
I think that it’s important for all voices to be heard because all generations have something to say. Older generations certainly have experience, but younger generations, like GenZ, can offer a fresh perspective and new energy when it comes to topics such as climate change, race, sexual harassment, and sexual oritentation and gender identity. Our generation has begun to challenge several status quos, like climate change and systemic racism, and the only way change happens is if people are allowed to express their opinions.
Are you optimistic or pessimistic about the future?
I’m optimistic about the future – after all, if we’re pessimistic and believe that change will never happen, then that’s what will happen! I think in the twenty one years that I’ve been alive, there’s already been some amazing changes in American society. At least within my generation, a lot of us accept people’s sexual orientations and gender identities without question and being of a different race or ethnicity has begun to mean less and less to us than in previous generations. If you think about what it was like in our parents’ youth, the topic of LGBTQ+ matters was more taboo and gender identities weren’t even discussed; in our grandparents’ time, segregation of schools and public areas based on the color of your skin was still allowed. To see how much change that has happened in spite of other issues genuinely gives me hope that we’re living in a time when we have the power to make this world a better place. The fight is nowhere near over, but the people who are leading the charge are starting conversations that need to be had.
What are the most important issues facing our world right now? And in the future?
I think a lot of the issues our world faces right now revolve around social justice. As our generation has begun to challenge the standard identity – i.e. white, straight, cis men – there has been a larger need to recognize and respect minority races, sexualities, gender identities, and communities. Because of this, movements like BLM and LGBTQ+ rights have become only two of the many issues the world needs to address.
In the future, though, I think we’ll see a significant change in our younger population’s mental health. A lot of us have grown up in a world where we connect with others through the internet, which is a double edge sword of connection and exposure. A lot of us struggle with mental disorders such as depression and anxiety and many feel like they’re completely alone. Even though there is more research, technology, and efforts to help, it’s something that will need to be addressed more and more.
What does your organization offer that helps the world be a better place?
Female empowerment is essential to inspire others into believing they can triumph past their most significant obstacles and prove they are strong in a world where they may be told otherwise. Many girls and women have difficulties finding other girls and women to talk to; therefore, women need to be part of a community where they can talk amongst other women. Girltelligence’s mission is to connect GenZ women, both younger and older, to build a community of inclusivity, diversity, and acceptance.
Will you be voting in the next election?
Will I be voting, you ask? Heck. Yes. I wasn’t able to vote in the last election because I was underage, but you can bet I’m voting this year!
Please tell us all about your current campaigns, projects, and endeavors.
One of the projects that the Girltelligence Student Leadership Boards are working on are infographic posts that discuss various topics and what girls need to know about them. For instance, we’ve released posts about a range of topics, from sexual consent, to STEAM careers, to social justice issues. We in the Student Leadership Boards want to teach other girls, especially younger ones, what we wanted to know when we were their age and to generally spread awareness on topics that are not always discussed. We also want this project to be the first step in beginning conversations between girls about serious topics.
Tell everyone where to find you online and on social platforms.
You can find us on the Apple and Android app stores – just look up “Girltelligence” to find us! You can check out our website: http://www.girltelligence.com We’re also on Instagram, so follow us – @Girltelligence.
If there is anything else you would like to say, please do!
If you’re interested in joining our Leadership Board, fill out one of the following Google forms to apply:
If you are in college: https://forms.gle/GCqtdRngUpv9U8vUA
If you are an incoming 8th or 9th grader please fill out this application: