Molly Martuscello is weeks away from walking away from Bryant University with a degree in Management and a concentration in sociology. In her four years here, however, Martuscello has been much more than a student: she has been the manager of the softball team for the last four years, performed in the Coming Out Monologues, and really worked to create a campus change this year with her push to make Bryant the first college in the Northeastern Conference sports division to be a member of the You Can Play campaign.
This is a national campaign that is designed to provide a safe space for student athletes of all different nationalities, gender identities, and sexual orientations. While the initiative does place a lot of emphasis on the equality of members of the LGBTQ community, it is truly an overarching campaign for equality of all athletes. Martuscello says that this was a personal endeavor for her as a tribute to past, present, and future athletes and a means of highlighting the positives of an already accepting environment. When Molly came out during her sophomore year, she said that her team was one-hundred accepting and embracing of who she was as a person. “Nothing changed, if anything the friendships have become stronger because we all were able to be who we were”.
Martuscello says that her activism began when she was in sixth grade when she became a member of a youth empowerment drug and alcohol prevention program. Translating this activism into the Bryant community, particularly into athletics, was an easy transition. Molly believes that Bryant is a wonderful place to be an activist and a woman. She says that one of the best parts of being a Bryant woman is that she is constantly surrounded by other motivated woman. Bryant, as an academically rigorous institution, brings in only the most motivated and driven students. The diligence these women bring to the classroom then is further translated into other aspects of their lives. “There are so many empowered women that lead the organizations here at Bryant”, notes Martuscello. The faculty and staff work in conjunction with these empowered students to create an environment where everyone is provided with an equal opportunity.
Martuscello gives the following advice to her fellow classmates, both male and female, “Be true to yourself, and be fearless in what you do. Use fear to your advantage, use it as a motivator. So often we get distracted by fear, be fearless in what you do”.
It is the hope of the Hochberg Women’s Center and the Bryant Archway to make the Featuring Feminism column a permanent spot in the weekly newspaper. The intent of this column will be to highlight empowered women and men who strive to make a difference on Bryant’s campus, particularly in the realm of equality and acceptance of all students. Each week a student, staff, or faculty member can be nominated by Tuesday by sending an email to Aubrey Waz (firstname.lastname@example.org) with an individual’s name and a brief description of why you believe this individual should be the following week’s featured feminist.