The official student newspaper of Oak Park and River Forest High School

The Trapeze

The official student newspaper of Oak Park and River Forest High School

The Trapeze

The official student newspaper of Oak Park and River Forest High School

The Trapeze

Who run the world? Women in Leadership

In a fast-evolving world, women continue to break barriers within a myriad of fields. Here at Oak Park and River Forest High School, the Women in Leadership club aims to grow collaborative and empowered leaders.

This is quite an active year for WIL, as they are taking on various volunteering opportunities outside of school while focusing on events within our OPRF community. During the third week of October, WIL will mark the annual Breast Cancer Awareness Week.

WIL is partnering with a nonprofit organization called Bright Pink, where all proceeds from their merchandise sales will be donated. “Our T-shirt sales were through the roof,” said co-president Phyllis Kreiter, emphasizing it “was way more than we thought, which is so awesome.”

However, the festivities don’t end there. WIL is decorating the entire Welcome Center with “300 total streamers,” said Krieter. On Friday, Oct. 13, volunteers were at work wrapping balconies in streamers in various shades of pink.

About 297,790 new cases of invasive breast cancer will be diagnosed in women in 2023, according to the American Cancer Society. In response to the emotional and physical toll taken upon patients, WIL is taking action by writing numerous cards of encouraging sentiments that will be sent to the National Breast Cancer Foundation.

In addition to these volunteer efforts, WIL’s general meetings consist of discussion questions that correlate to women’s history and the mechanisms of intersectionality. Social worker and club sponsor Nabiha Calcuttawala expands on intersectionality, saying, “There is a connection that we have within our role in society, and how that impacts our lives. Intersectionality extends to gender, socioeconomic status, religion, and race that impact their ability to do things they want in life.”

Zoey Fejes, a junior, echoed that idea, saying, “Woman in Leadership offers a space for women to feel included and touplift each other.”

WIL also looks to the future by learning from guest speakers who have firsthand experience of working in male-dominated professions. “One of our guest speakers is a woman of color who has persevered through the education field, but has become super successful,” said Kreiter.

They are having an annual women in STEM week and philanthropy week in January, to truly encapsulate and learn about future professions. Service is a trademark within WIL, but empowerment is their main agenda. “It’s about amplifying the voices of women in the building and empowering one another in a way that ultimately helps the world around us,” said Calcuttawala. (Ryan Scott)

Co-president Phyllis Kreiter expanded on this statement. “It is a community that empowers women through all domains,” she said.

To that end, WIL is gearing up for the well-known tampon drive, which all members are excited to share with the school community. The tampon drive is a WIL original, sticking to this project ever since the club was founded. Sophie Welch, a junior at Oak Park and River Forest said, “I think this year’s tampon drive is going to do better than last year.”

Last year’s tampon drive was a hit, reaching a staggering $3,000 total in pads and tampons. “It’s really great to see our community step up for something that’s very hidden; nobody wants to talk about it, and they’ll tiptoe around it, right? So it’s really cool to see teachers giving extra ef-
fort,” said Kreiter.

WIL’s room is 3301, and they meet on Thursdays at 7:15 a.m. The club’s Instagram handle is @oprf.wil.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Trapeze Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *