Older generations often label millennials as lazy and selfish. To those people, I say, “Come visit Arcadia!” Our generation has gotten this bad reputation, but I’m sure there are lots of complex, political reasons for it, since it doesn’t seem to be based in reality. Especially at Arcadia, my fellow millennials have shown themselves to be active about things they care about.
Ever since the election, more and more people here have stepped up and gone to protests. There are new posts on Facebook with people attending protests each weekend and sometimes during the week, too, braving the cold winter air and using precious time they could spend doing school work or sleeping to go out into the streets, or the airport, protesting the injustices they see in the world.
Lots of Arcadia students went to the Women’s March, and the For the Women club organized a group trip to the protest. For the Women (FTW) has organized trips to the Slut Walk and March to End Rape Culture, and has put on the Vagina Monologues every year. They run fundraisers for breast cancer awareness month and important feminist causes all year round. It’s one of the most politically active clubs, and is also one of the biggest clubs at Arcadia.
FTW isn’t the only activism-minded club at Arcadia. Amnesty International, PAW, or People for Animal Welfare, and PRIDE, a club for LGBTQ+ students and allies, also do important activism work.
It’s not surprising that so many Arcadia students are activists. There’s a large LGBTQ+ population here, and we have so many international students that we’re very racially and ethnically diverse. In any given class, students are offering their very different perspectives from their own life experiences. Our relatively small class sizes gives everyone an opportunity to have their voice heard, and to hear everyone else’s ideas. This kind of environment fosters open-mindedness.
Being in close proximity to Philadelphia, surrounded by students who share my passion for activism and human rights, is something that I don’t take for granted. I’m glad to be at Arcadia where I encounter so many diverse, amazing people who care deeply about making the world a better place.