In this section:

QYLs speak...

Image credit: Queen's Young Leaders Programme

Two years on: Alicia Wallace

Two years on: Alicia Wallace

Leading Change catches up with Queen's Young Leaders and asks them to reflect on their experiences

Alicia Wallace is a women’s rights activist, public educator and writer. She is the Director of Equality Bahamas, which focuses on women’s rights through community education, engagement, and empowerment. She is passionate about social justice and believes youth participation and cross-regional collaboration are vital to creating a better world.

1. Looking back to the beginning of the Leading Change course, what are the significant developments in your work or education?

"Since 2015, I've definitely put more time and energy into building community, and creating environments for community members to contribute to scoping, idea generation, assessments.

"I've learned that I don't always have to be the expert. I've shifted my priority to creating opportunities for others to lead, recognising and acknowledging the potential and evidenced abilities of others.

"This has helped me to think about, conduct, and present my work differently, and maintain a better work-life balance."

2. Complete the sentence, "Two years on from becoming a Queen's Young Leader I realise that the programme..."

"...is even more valuable now that – as an Alumna – I can contribute to its continued development and deepen my own knowledge through interactions with new Queen's Young Leaders as they engage with and discuss course material."

3. What was the highlight of your first year as a Queen's Young Leader Alumna?

"The highlight of my first year as an Alumna was participation in the Alt-Commons course delivered by Dr Karen Salt.

"It created an equally challenging and nurturing space for me to think about myself in relation to my community.

"I appreciated the push to be reflective, but also open about my findings and the process of reaching them, questioning my own experience of the world, and being conscious about my interaction with family, culture, politics, bureaucratic institutions, and my own work."

4. What are you planning for 2017?

"This year, I'm working toward a number of goals. One major focus is on democracy and its functions. I'm interested in building people power, and exploring ways to do that through political and social action, and using both academia and the arts as primary tools.

"Personally, I am practicing something new for me – asking. Just two months in, I'm overwhelmed by the enthusiastic support I get when I let people know what I'm doing, what I need, and how they can help, and recognising that accepting help is not a sign of weakness, but wisdom."