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Alum Voices

The Audacious Voices Project is a collection of interviews with alums that showcase the lifelong impact of will. The project began with the publication of Audacious Voices: Profiles in Intersectional Feminism in 2018. The book, edited by directors Holly Blake and Melissa Ooten, features stories from twelve alums that capture the diverse ways in which they work to make their communities more equitable. Their stories also illustrate how different elements of the will program influence and inspire them to act with such intentionality.

At will's 40th anniversary celebration in 2019, alums were invited to share the power of the program in their lives. Emphasizing hope, empathy, and resiliency by showcasing the power of inclusive leadership, advocacy, and mentorship, these interviews show us that real change is possible and that the program's influence lasts long after graduation. These recordings will soon be accessible here. The project is on-going, and we invite interested alums who may be visiting the university to contact us if interested in adding to the collection.

Audacious Voices Cover

Inspiring and hopeful, Audacious Voices: Profiles in Intersectional Feminism (published in November 2018) is a collection of twelve stories from alums of the will program, a feminist educational model that centers social justice.

Author-activist Courtney E. Martin writes in The New Better Off that the times we live in may break our hearts, but they don't have to break our spirit; it's that spirit that these stories capture, alongside the power of a feminist educational program that engenders such spirit.

Alum Voices

"Because of will, I learned that I could use my voice and be an agent of change. Unequivocally, will pushed me in the direction I was meant to go and equipped me with the tools needed to make that path my own. I do not know of a more powerful and lasting gift you can give a young woman." — Jennifer Stolarski, will program alum whose story is featured in Audacious Voices

What People are Saying About "Audacious Voices"

Timely and prescient, Audacious Voices reminds us that students have long held the keys to unlocking a more just future for everyone. Audacious Voices demands that we listen, and reminds us to believe in the power of social change. 

—Allison Kimmich, former Executive Director, National Women’s Studies Association

Audacious Voices weaves a combination of stories, reflection, analysis and praxis into a sharp feminist retrospective for us to witness, learn from and share.  Over the years the will program has cultivated an amazing set of students and learners, and it’s a testament to the power of that program that it has informed much of their lived experience, leadership and work; and that we get to bear witness to their many paths towards transformation, and their visions for our feminist futures.

—Paulina Helm-Hernandez, former co-director of Southerners on New Ground

In Audacious Voices, Holly Blake and Melissa Ooten have gathered the personal stories of students who participated in a single feminist program that has now spanned several decades at the University of Richmond. The result is a moving testimony to the transformations, both public and intimate, that are possible only when we put feminist theory into practice.

—Daisy Hernández, Assistant Professor, Department of English, Miami University