Nailah Ajamu (2005-2006)

…My life is evolving…growing…becoming. Sometimes I feel like I am finding myself, only to stumble against the reality that I am still changing…maybe even a bit lost. It is such an amazing experience to live as your own mediator of everything. That is what college did for me…changed me into a person truly making her own decisions and realizing the weight and the privilege of that. It made me see some things differently, let me truly develop my own mindset. It freed me…and at the same time I feel it sometimes boxes me in.

As a Grrrl I remind myself to be ever true to myself in whatever I do. I realize that one light shining can truly cause others to do the same because I help my girls to uplift themselves and give them a truly Grrrl attitude. Not to say that I’ve learned it all, but I share what I’ve learned to those who wish to know and I too learn from them.

Fisk has opened my eyes to the fact that I am not the only one. That there are others out there like me other than in my family, other than in Act Like a GRRRL. My class is a class full of artists; visual artists, actors, singers, dancers…I love it. When I saw them I just knew…I just knew that it’d be different than my other school experiences.

I realized that I could truly be myself around them which led me on the path of being myself wherever I am. Not being ashamed of who I am. And I feel that I’ve truly grown so much.
One thing for sure that this school does for me is that it keeps me busy. So I have to learn to take care of myself and sometimes that means taking a break. I am learning to be gentle with myself and to be happy just because I am alive. Otherwise I would probably crack, so I have ultimately learned to cope.

Act Like a GRRRL has truly helped me to learn to speak the truth that resides in me. And now that I am here, on my own, an adult, I am learning to live by that truth. Nobody can tell me what to believe or take anything away from me that is rightfully mine. Here at college I have been both a teacher and a learner. A teacher ever patient and ever loving and a student ever thirsting for knowledge of this complex world around me.

I believe that truly growing into adulthood is all about finding yourself and learning to be who you truly are…whoever that may be from one minute to the next.

…So to all of the Grrrrls out there…my message is stay true and stay you…and follow the path that your heart has laid out.

 

Ashley Strickland (2005-2006)


“ I currently reside in Chattanooga, TN. I'm a second semester freshman at the University of Tennessee-Chattanooga. I do believe I'm in one of the most beautiful places on earth as well as in life. Act Like a GRRRL helped me to be able to speak up about how I felt. I guess you could say ALAG changed my life and allowed me to become free! I was able to tell my story both vocally and written. My friends and family were forced to listen to me and that changed my life. I learned that I was beautiful both inside and outside. It was a wonderful experience and something that I will never forget.

ALAG helped to me to get and maintain successful friendships and relationships. For the first time in my life I am in a healthy dating relationship with a wonderful boy, in fact today it will be 17 months since we first started dating!

Words of wisdom for future GRRRLs, be open minded and let go! Trust those around you and trust yourself. Use your voice it will grow strong the more you use it. Also fall in love with yourself and you'll be able to fall in love with others! Life is wonderful and beautiful and I am so glad I'm in it!”



Haviland Forrister (2005-2008)

“I attend Agnes Scott College, an all-girls undergraduate college, in Decatur, GA. I am currently planning on majoring in Astrophysics and Philosophy, with a minor in Religion. Emotionally, I am very sure of myself. Whenever I feel myself get upset over something, I think of the GRRRL way of approaching things, and immediately I go through all the how's and why's of the situation until I feel like I know where I am, why I am, and what I can do to deal with whatever upset me.

Over the past semester at college, I have gained friends and lost friends, and it's this odd process that I don't know if I'll ever get used to. But I'm just going with the flow, dealing with things as they come, being with the friends who still call me their friend and always keeping a lookout for other GRRRLs on the horizon. I am beautiful, confident, and willing to live life. I am trusting, but smart. I am loving, but selfish. I am amazing. Act Like a GRRRL showed me how to love and how to accept love. It taught me a way of looking at the world that allows me to be myself, to be confident, and yet to be empathetic with others. I believe in myself above all else, thanks to Act Like a GRRRL. I believe in myself, and I am sure of what I want out of others, and I trust my own intuition, and I approach every situation with this outlook of knowing where I stand and what I will and will not accept from others. Act Like a GRRRL taught me how to step back from a situation and evaluate exactly what was going on, the societal pressures that were being placed on me and the demands that others were implicating. Act Like a GRRRL helped me become more sure, more confident, more thoughtful, more empathetic, more loving, more accepting, and more curious about the world. It has defined who I am and the person that I will become….There's no right or wrong here; there's just you. And you'll be fantastic.”

 

Deanna Riggan (ALAG 2006, Intern 2007)


" I feel like I am becoming a very strong young woman. I participated in the Vagina Monologues last February and am currently co-directing the Vagina Monologues at Warren Wilson College. I have learned a lot about my passions in life which include working with women's issues. I am majoring in Gender and Women's studies and minoring in Creative Writing.

Act Like a GRRRL was probably the biggest thing that has ever happened to me. I do not know where I would be if I had not done the program. It showed me my potential to be a grrrl.

Future Girls: Enjoy having ALAG's supportive environment. It is a true blessing. Believe in yourself, every girl has the potential to be a grrrl!