Women’s History Month shines light on PNW students’ heroes

As the nation celebrates Women’s History Month, the women many PNW students first think about happen to be mothers.

“The woman that is my biggest inspiration is my mom,” said sophomore Biology major Michael Parianos. “She really taught me that your life might not always follow the plan you set out, which is why you have to keep working hard.“ 

March is Women’s History Month. Congress designated the month in 1987. The first celebration of women took place in 1909 when 15,000 women marched through Manhattan to protest working conditions in garment factories. The month has come to recognize women’s contributions around the world. 

“My mom is my hero because without her, all the things that I have accomplished thus far in my life, I don’t think I would have been able to do,” said Colleen Triska, senior Communication major. “When I was growing up, I watched my mom work … three jobs while also going to school full time to be a teacher and take care of myself and my brother while also taking care of home duties. 

“The reason that my mom is my biggest hero is because I watched her struggle and persevere and not let anything get in her way of her dreams and it’s pushed me to do the same,” she said.

Viviana Canelo, a senior Nursing major, was also inspired by her mother.

“My mom started nursing school at 35, so she’s only been a nurse for a few years,” Canelo said. “I’d see her study every day and when she came home she’d talk about her clinical. … She’s the big reason that I went into nursing. She inspired me to do that.” 

Obi Ezekwesili, junior Computer Science major, credits his grandmother for changing his family’s future.

“My family is originally from Nigeria but my grandmother made it to the states and even after making it created a life for my father,” he said. “That is what got me to where I am today and why I continue to push and be the best me because I know how much she sacrificed for not just me but my whole family.”

Mikell Cooper, Brevin Jefferson, Damani Wicks and Anna Zurisk contributed to this story.