This Saturday I sat on the Hoya visionaries panel at the Georgetown University Own It Summit. I was so thrilled to return to my alma mater after six years and speak to current students about the difficulties I experienced as a student at Georgetown. I was able to speak honestly about the pervasive bro culture and how fraternities would make me feel bad about myself. They said that they don’t have any frats at Georgetown yet there were plenty of athletic clubs and boys clubs that had that same oppressive feeling. I talked about how so many of those parties were socially forced upon us and yet they never felt good.
I talked about how we as women have to self select out and create our own amazing spaces. I talked about how I knew better music, enjoyed way better beer, and was able to host people in my home for far more spiritual and uplifting events. That was when I stepped into my own shoes which happened my senior year when I was living in Burleith . It was also possible because I was able to find myself through the drums by playing out in the city with Thomas Blondet, Theivery Corporation, See-I, Sitali and tons of other bands who welcomed me in and helped build my confidence through music. It was only then that I started to feel good about being a student and confident about my self worth. That was a huge step.
I spoke about how I used my math major to get my first job at Interscope but how I didn’t have a job when graduating and how embarrassed my parents were on my behalf. It was amazing because then all three of the other panelists visionaries revealed that they also did not have a job upon graduation and yet were enormously successful. It’s important to note that many of these traditional universities are very good at getting their students into consulting or banking Jobs but they are not good at getting their students into interesting, boundary pushing, alternative career paths that are equally lucrative. Today I spend every moment of my life either focus on music or feminism, which gives me enormous joy and energizes me.
One student asked about self-care and while I do feel joyful most of the time because I am doing exactly what I love, I mentioned the value in spending time alone, at least for me, to hear myself think, as well as eating right, in my case little to no drinking, vegan and gluten-free. This allows me to be a lover of all things when I’m on the road, while making sure that I am somewhat disciplined. I told her candidly that when I was at Georgetown I used to eat so badly because I felt stressed and bad about myself and I didn’t like it. So that’s why I had to stop doing that. I feel so connected to these young girls and so grateful they were hosting this big conference to bring so much female talent to campus. My favorite part about the conference was how many of the men also came up to support and told me they had bought a ticket for my show at Tropicalia that night. I ended the panel by performing the future is female and passing out stickers to everyone who sat in the front row. It was an amazing and well organized event. Congrats to the entire Own It Summit team. The future is certainly female.
Photos by Ashley Sinha