Chicagoans React to Ban Bossy

In response to my blog post last week titled “Why I Can’t Lean In to Ban Bossy,” I received an email from a journalism student at Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism asking if she could interview me for a class project. To say I was flattered would be a gross understatement. I immediately wrote her back thanking her for her interest and agreeing to be interviewed.

Early Sunday morning, we had a lovely phone conversation and then scheduled a time to meet in person for an on-camera interview.

When we met in person, I was struck by her obvious personal interest in the idea of Ban Bossy, the research she’d done, and the thoroughness of her questions. Her assignment was to create a 90 second story about a current issue, presenting both sides of the topic, but, in addition to her professional interest in the campaign, she was clearly passionate about the topic personally.

She told me she had spoken to a number of young women in the Lincoln Park area, many of whom were college students, and a number of them had been completely unaware of the Ban Bossy campaign by the Girl Scouts and the Lean In Foundation. Frankly, that surprised me. Given how prominent this campaign has been in both traditional and social media, I would have thought that it would have been more widely known about in an academic community. After our meeting, she was headed off to meet with the Girl Scouts to learn more about the campaign from their perspective.

Below is the final story she turned in for her class. While I’m only seen and heard on camera for a few seconds, we probably spoke for about 20 minutes. I think she did a great job of fairly representing my points; I was quite nervous after we were done that I sounded like a gibbering idiot (no offense to actual gibbering idiots).

In an email this morning, she said that her professors here happy with her finished project and “noted that you were an excellent interview and brought up some nuanced points.” Yay for me!

Unfortunately, the sound is a bit off in the video, but I’ve been told that this often happens when using iTouch video with the editing software. No big deal.

And that’s one more new experience for my year. New Experience #213 to be exact.

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    Jessica Gardner

    A native of Chicago's Northwest Suburbs and resident of the North Shore, Little Merry Sunshine comes by her name honestly. The story goes that as a child, she was always so happy that she even slept with a smile on her face. Her mom nicknamed her Little Merry Sunshine. It stuck, along with her insatiable desire to focus on the good in the world and to leave it a little better than she found it. She does this by sharing her passions and dreams, what inspires her, and maybe you too, and furthering the discussion about how we can listen to our better angels. You can reach her at LittleMerrySunshineCN[at]WowWay[dot]com.

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