So here you are, the past four years of high school have prepared you for this moment— you’re a college student, out in the world on your own! You are excited! You left your home state and moved five hours and four states away to attend one of the best public universities in the New England area! You are excited to be surrounded by a wide variety of people from different countries, states, and socioeconomic backgrounds–people that you did not encounter in your small, rural hometown. But then it happens, you attend your first economics class and you barely step foot out the door of the classroom and are already on the phone with your mother. The rant has begun… he is “most definitely a liberal” and how are you suppose to listen to him EVERY Tuesday/Thursday for an entire semester?! He bleeds Hillary 2016 and you pray that this is not how every professor you encounter for the next four years will be. While not every professor will be obvious, some will make you wonder which sign they will put in their front yard this upcoming year (these professors are the true MVPs) some simply cannot hide their left side views.

You make friends in your dorm room or in a class and one day they see your elephant sticker on your laptop, or your car, or maybe even the cute new shirt you got and the bombardment of questions come rolling in. “Oh so do you enjoy making 77 cents for every dollar that men earn?” “Do you own a gun?” “Do you attend church every Sunday?” Now I’ve grown accustomed to these “standard questions”, but I still remember the overwhelming sense of disbelief that washed over me the first time I was confronted with them. Yes, I am a Christian, but not every Republican is–but is that not one of the great things about America– our First Amendment right: the Freedom of Religion.  As for being a feminist? The fact that other young women were shaming me for my beliefs! Feminism is defined as “the doctrine advocating social, political, and all other rights of women equal to those of men.” If that is the case, then why am I being judged for believing in a small government and pro life? I don’t think that any woman should be criticizing other women for any of their opinions, regardless of their political views.  

For those of you young ladies who are still haven’t started college yet, I hope I have not scared you because let me tell you, you will also have your A HAH moment. One day you will find a friend who shares the same values as you! Mine happened to be at the expense of one of my friends, who during freshman year one day, walked up to us for lunch wearing an Obama sweatshirt and I noticed we both shared an eye roll. I will admit though the only thing that has been greater than finding out she was a Republican, might have been how much my other two friends (who are in state students and registered Democrats) respected my opinion. I love that I can text them about political issues and have an intelligent, educated, calm conversation where we both talk and ask questions that make us see a bigger picture. I love that when I became a FFL Contributor they were so proud of me and “gifted” me with the follow of all FFL accounts.  My friends encouraged me to share my voice and when I was scared to apply for the FFL contributor program, thinking how no way could I match up to these other women, they almost did it for me! Through FFL, I have met other young women that are all so different but who all share the same values as myself. At school and at home I have surrounded myself with Republican, Liberal, Independent, and non-affiliated people who have all made me a better supporter of my party. So while at school, or even just in life, remember that other like-minded people are out there and you will find yourself your own little oasis of red in a land of blue.