What Advocacy Means to Me

Advocacy is a word that many of us are familiar with, but it carries a different weight and meaning for each individual. To me, advocacy is simply seeing something you want changed in the world and then acting upon that desire. Acting upon that desire for change can look like as large-scale as a protest, or as small-scale as a conversation with a friend. Advocacy can be big or small, but if you are proactively seeking to change something, promote something, present something even – you are an advocate. When I think of advocacy, I also this of this quote by Margaret Mead:

I heard this quote from a teacher in high school, but it captures the essence of advocacy for me. Advocacy doesn’t start with world leaders, politicians, or celebrities – although it can. More often than not, advocacy and change begins with a couple of individuals who want to see a change in the world and do something about it. This is extremely relevant to our topic of advocating change on a college campus, because even a small group of caring students can create waves of change on their campus and beyond.

When I think of movements that work to create change, I think of people who are united under a common goal or purpose. I also think of courage, passion, and perseverance.

Movements that come to mind:

  • Anti-Vietnam war movement
  • Civil Rights movement
  • Anti-Immigration ban movement
  • Gender equality movement
  • LGBTQ Rights movement

Brainstorming movements that interest me:

  • Anti-Vietnam war movement 
    • began mostly on college campuses
    • this movement intersects with my sense of identity as an Asian American
    • benefits: understanding more of our history, learning more about a prominent movement that began on college campuses
    • challenges: sorting out all of the information on this topic since it’s such a large issue; looking at multiple perspectives on this movement

  • Anti-Immigration ban movement
    • this movement is close to me because my parents were immigrants
    • this movement is interesting to me because it’s still developing and happening currently
    • benefits: explore the Trump administration and policies and how they affect our country and the world
    • challenges: because the movement is so current, it might be difficult to find an extensive amount of information on it




One thought on “What Advocacy Means to Me

  1. To begin, I like that you pointed out that both large- and small-scale advocacy actions are important to promoting a movement. Many ordinary people think that they are just “one in a million” (or more like one in seven billion) and that they can not possibly make an impact. However, the greatest aspect of movements is the ability to join together with other people and this is how movements get their strength. This is especially easy to do on college campuses where a bunch of like-minded people are all concentrated in one area. Moreover, in college, people are physically independent from their parents and start to get involved in world issues on their own. Lastly, I like that you plan on focusing on movements that are relevant to current events. I think it is really important to know what is going on in the world today, and it is motivating that we can actually join the movements and make a change.


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