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Student Affairs
May 2, 2018

How Hilary Rucker is Working to Empower and Educate Others

May 2, 2018 by Student Affairs

Hilary Rucker chose Loyola Marymount University for its diversity of mind, body and spirit. She saw this, among other attributes she valued in LMU’s mission, reflected in student organization Working to Empower and Educate.

After connecting with her classmates, Rucker joined Working to Empower and Educate (WEE) and became treasurer. Along with LMU CARES and Mane Entertainment, the sophomore psychology and women’s and gender studies major recently assisted in co-coordinating SAAM Slam: Open Mic Night. It was the first event of LMU’s fifth annual Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

In her own words, Rucker shares about her appreciation for diversity, her own LMU EXP with WEE and why students should live a passionate life.

Hilary Rucker ’20
Major: Psychology, Women’s and Gender Studies
Hometown: Los Angeles, California

When I was applying to colleges as a senior in high school, Loyola Marymount University was my first choice. Some of the things that attracted me to LMU was its location in Los Angeles, California, the beauty of the campus, the research and employment opportunities, the small class sizes and the general atmosphere of concern for human well-being and celebration of diversity.

As a black female, I knew there would not be a lot of people who looked like me at LMU. Nevertheless, I decided that I would make friends with members of the Black community as well as people of all different races, ethnicities, socioeconomic classes, religions, genders, and sexualities. I knew that LMU valued diversity of mind, body, and spirit and was confident that this type of environment would foster inclusion and encourage acceptance.

I got involved in Working to Empower and Educate (WEE) a in October 2017. A few of the women from the Race, Gender and Sexuality class I took last year were interested in forming a feminist organization that would put on events as well as work to empower and educate people of all different races, ethnicities, genders and sexualities. The organization reflected the attributes that I valued in LMU’s culture, so I agreed to join and became the treasurer.

A few months ago, I received a notification that clubs and organizations could put on events to show support for Sexual Assault Awareness Month (SAAM) in April. My organization members and I were interested in hosting a poetry slam, so we teamed up with Mane Entertainment because they have open mic nights every Monday night in The Living Room on campus.

We selected a Monday night in April and began advertising for people to show their support for survivors through poetry/spoken word, music, and any form of art they deemed appropriate. Overall, the night was very satisfying, the audience was great, and the members of Mane Entertainment were a lovely team to work with. This experience has reiterated the fact that different people can come together to show their support for and learn about issues that affect people all around the world.

Out of the five pillars of the LMU EXP, I believe the “Live a Life of Purpose” best reflects my experience. This pillar emphasizes the need to lead a passionate life and to use those passions and interests to help or support people who are in need. I think it perfectly sums up what the point of Sexual Assault Awareness Month is and why Working to Empower and Educate decided to host an event with Mane Entertainment.