By Morgan Givney
Everyone has a story to tell. That story has the power to impact lives in a way not imaginable to the person who holds it. The blog Pamabvi celebrates and recognizes the testimonies of inspirational black women on campus.
The creator of the home page writes “Pamabvi is about sisterhood! The strong women featured here have faced many challenges and come out strong. Now we want to share our stories, and let other women out there know that they are not alone!”
The first story was posted Jan. 14 and explains the meaning of the name Pamabvi as well as the meaning of the blog to the unknown originator. It says, “When I got to SC, I met several phenomenal women – especially strong black women who taught me what it means to be a builder. Each one of these women has a unique story to share. Their stories have inspired me to believe in myself and know that the sky is the limit.”
Following this original post, six inspirational black women have shared their story: Shelby Ponder, psychology senior, Alissa Sheppard, master’s student, Anjaih Clemons, master’s student, Krystal Winn, multicultural admissions counselor, Verna Jokomo, undergraduate student and most recently Lai-L Clemons, director of campus life.
The writer of the blog highlights each woman and then the featured women write their story and what they want to share with readers.
Alissa Sheppard said the purpose of the blog is to tell stories of black women who the originator thinks are powerful.
“I think I did (the blog entry) because I think people have an image of me, whether it’s good or bad. Like ‘She’s a single mom and not married, and that’s a bad thing.’ Or people think ‘She’s happy because she walks around with a smile,’ but I have a story. Nine out of 10 times I’m not who people think I am,” said Sheppard.
Sheppard said she shared her story on the blog for people who have a baby or child. She wanted to be an example for them. “I want to show them that I succeeded even when I had the world against me,” said Sheppard.
Winn shared her personal story, “When God Leads the Way,” on the blog. Winn said the blog is an opportunity to better the campus community and give minority females the opportunity for their voices to be heard.
Anjaih Clemons said “I think in general (I want readers to see) that no matter our situation or struggle if you just press your way through, you can overcome it. Don’t allow your situation to define who you are. You can always refer back to it. Don’t forget where you came from, but don’t let it define you,” said Clemons.
Clemons shared her story on the blog because no one knew it. “The people in my office didn’t even know until a couple of weeks before I graduated. No one really knew, but over the course of time I’ve been here I’ve been pushed to tell my story. To visually see someone walking around campus who is normal and happy that has been through your shoes is helpful. I was hesitant but I know it’s time,” said Clemons.
Sheppard has received many positive comments from people, including strangers, about her post. “I’ve received comments from people who attended SC and graduated way before I was born,” said Sheppard.
Readers of the blog and students on campus can nominate inspiring black women on campus to share their story. Nominations can be submitted by e-mailing email@example.com. You can visit the blog here: http://number1woman.wordpress.com/.
“Yesterday does not determine tomorrow. Use your testimony to strengthen your walk and uplift the voices of others,” said Winn.
Morgan Givney is a junior majoring in communication. You may e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.