Guest Blogger: Shweta S. Patwardhan (spatward@wellesley.edu)

 

As speculation builds around Hillary Clinton’s possible 2016 presidential bid, here’s something more certain about the mark she’s leaving on the future.

A recent study featured in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology found that exposure to images of powerful women like Hillary or Angela Merkel helped women gain confidence and perform better in the workplace. When speaking to a group of six strangers, the women in the study spoke longer and more effectively if they were shown pictures of powerful female figures in the background instead of images of Bill Clinton or no one at all. “Subtle exposures to highly successful female leaders inspired the women’s behavior and self-evaluations in stressful leadership tasks.”

If simply seeing an image of a far-away politician can inspire confidence in so short a time frame, we ought to wonder what interacting with supportive mentors over an extended period can do to help low-income kids who are academically disengaged.

There are so many nonprofits from coast to coast producing “The Hillary Effect” on a daily basis.  Four that deserve particular mention for the significant work they’re doing to help at-risk kids embark on a path toward success are:

These nonprofits are proof that philanthropy can be a vehicle for significant change in young people’s lives – perhaps even greater change than a President Hillary Clinton would implement!