By being a woman, many people believe that women cannot be successful and start and own their businesses. By being an African American woman, many people not only believe that we should not have a seat at the table, but they also believe that we are not knowledgeable enough to be included in society.
In college, we are taught that we should only focus on our education and our career path after we complete our Undergraduate degree. Women today are taking matters into their own hands by starting a business that will not only benefit them, but that business will also benefit their customers as well. As a Sophomore in college, I have encountered several women that have started their businesses. What I have learned from these two women can be simply explained by the words of Michelle Obama, “Success isn’t about how much money you make, it’s about the difference you make in people’s lives”.
Bennecia Brown and Malisa Ray both attend Alabama State University in Montgomery, Alabama. These two women cater to the women on campus by doing hair and selling lashes. Bennecia Brown serves African American women in the community by doing hair and sharing her talents with other young women so they can learn how to be independent. Malisa Ray serves African American women in the community by providing them with lashes that are affiliated with Royalty. Each of her lash styles has their very own names such as Goddess, Empress, or Heiress which are to help women envision themselves as powerful human beings.
Photo from Unsplash
Bennecia Brown and Malisa Ray have similar beliefs, but what stands out the most with the two is that Women Empowerment is at the forefront of both of their business platforms. As African American Women, it is not only imperative that we support one another, but it is also imperative that we give back to our communities.
Many influential African American women have let an impact on the world. Michelle Obama who was the wife of 44th President Barack Obama initiated Let’s Move, which was a campaign aiming to reduce childhood obesity and encourage healthy eating. Michelle Obama also initiated Let Girls Learn which was a campaign built on empowering young ladies through education. Michelle Obama stated, “If you’re afraid to use your voice, give up your seat at the table”. As an African American woman, I, myself know that getting an education will open many doors for me and the generations to come. Social media constantly tarnishes the image of African American woman but as a community, if we continue to empower one another and support one another, we can defeat any obstacles that present themselves to us as a community.
Written By: Nakiyah McCafferty
My name is Nakiyah McCafferty and I am from Birmingham, Alabama. I am currently a Sophomore at Alabama State University. I am majoring in Social Work where I aspire to become a Medical Social Worker.