Dream big, high school students attend women's empowerment confe - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dream big, high school students attend women's empowerment conference in Dubuque

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It was a special day for some area high schoolers.

More than 60 students attended Hempstead High School Women's Empowerment Conference in Dubuque.

The theme of the all-day conference was, "Dream Big!"

"My dream is to become a professional makeup artist," said Madalyn Peter, a junior. "It's just a way to express myself, it's a form of art, the way I look at it."

The students are part of a group led by school counselors to give them positive messages about womanhood and self-worth. "Younger me was very insecure, walking in to high school," said Trinity Massey, a junior. "It really has helped with my self-esteem and how I view myself."

As the keynote speaker,  KWWL's Shirley Descorbeth shared her journey to becoming a broadcast journalist and some words of wisdom on not giving up. "You really have to believe. My dream...it really seemed so far-fetched. How was I going to make this come true?"

Descorbeth mentioned how self-affirmations and positive statements can help attain goals. 

Some of the students also viewed a personalized video message on empowerment from Dr. Tererai Trent, who is said to be Oprah Winfrey's all-time favorite guest. 

The day was filled with numerous activities. During break-out sessions, the Hempstead women created vision boards, danced their hearts out, learned about nutrition, meditation and speaking up for themselves.

They also explored career options and networked with local companies and colleges, such as Capri College, and the University of Dubuque. 

The Hempstead Women’s Empowerment Conference is funded by a grant from the James B. and Melita A. McDonough Foundation, through the Foundation for Dubuque Public Schools.

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