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Algonquin students reflect on taking part in 2018 Ottawa Women’s march

For the second time in history, women and their supporters rallied in downtown Ottawa on Saturday, Jan. 20, as part of this year’s Women’s March.

The marchers gathered on Parliament Hill to attend speeches before heading to the Bronson Centre.

The event commemorated the anniversary of the 2017 Women’s March, when protesters gathered around the world in support of women’s rights, a day after U.S. President Donald Trump’s inauguration.

A year later, protesters marched again to show that inequalities are still present in our society and to demand equal rights for women and many other marginalized communities.

Among the attendees, five Algonquin students took part in the event and reflected on their experience with the Algonquin Times.

For her first year in Ottawa, Chloe van Zyverden was excited to hit the streets with her group of friends.

“I wanted to get the experience, to be part of it, and I am really happy that I was able to attend the speeches on Parliament Hill,” she said. The student in Museum Studies recalls feeling empowered when surrounded by so many women.

Fallon McGee, a first year student in photography, wouldn’t have missed the opportunity to take powerful pictures at the march.

“At some point we walked past anti-protesters — there were only two of them — and it was interesting to see the contrast between them and thousands of people supporting the Women’s March,” McGee explained.

Among thousands of supporters, Monica Guerin is proud to call herself a feminist.

“I have always considered myself a feminist after Trump got elected,” she said. The first year student in environmental studies wanted to be part of the event in order to help empower women and let them know they have a voice.

Madison Awender, a first year student in the child and youth care program at Algonquin, is passionate about feminism and equal rights. As well as Guerin, Awender felt concerned by the issues surrounding women when Donald Trump became more popular in the media. The Women’s March was a way for her to stand up and voice her concerns in ways she never did before.

As a social service worker student, Kelsey Ross wants to become more active in the issues related to women. The 2018 Women’s March was her third experience advocating for minorities’ rights.

According to Ross, if you are studying in the social service field, you have to be a feminist.

“Feminism is for equality, no gender is superior,” said Ross. Because the fight for equality is an ongoing issue, Ross is determined to take part in next year’s Women March.

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