I can still remember today of the time I was told about the Civic Leadership Conference. One day I was passing through Trio Student Support Services to sign up for a math tutoring session and I had been caught off guard. It was my advisor who was so eager to tell me to sign up for this “awesome” conference that I would really find enjoyable. I was still not sure if I wanted to go and I did not really know much about what a civic leadership conference really was. I decided to go anyways.
It was about 7:00 A.M the day of the Conference that we took off in the trio van. I remember waking up at 6:00 in the morning thinking, “Why did I sign up for this?” As I got into the van I noticed a group of 6 or 7 other students at the same time. As we started driving toward Olympia I introduced myself to all of the students and they did the same. We all had breakfast and got and got a free t-shirt. The further along the day went; I got to know the students a little more. During the conference an advisor did a presentation about Advocacy and how we could contribute. The more I heard the more I was inspired to share my story. One of the other students, had encouraged me to come forth to the stage and share my story. This was the first time that I had ever spoken in front of such a huge crowd. Afterwards we went to lunch; I started to think about how nervous I was. One of the high school students came up to me to tell me how inspired she was. This is when I realized that I had so much more to share.
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”