Want to live in a world where girls get to choose their own career: Malala Yousafzai

Some eight years ago, the life of a 15-year-old girl hailing from Swat changed drastically. Not the kind you’d read in novels – no. The kind that reflects upon how she became a full-fledged activist at such young age.She was shot in the head by the Taliban on her way back from school on October 9, 2018. The reason for targeting a teenage was her active participation in speaking out about the minimal rights of girls’ education in the country. They wanted to silence that voice.PHOTO: BRITISH VOGUEThe irony of this incident was that Malala’s voice became an echo when it came to advocating for the same. The now 21-year-old activist is currently enrolled at Oxford University where she starts her second year.And she’s vouching for all the girls to be given such opportunities. Malala recently graced the cover of British Vogue, where she penned her experience at the prestigious institution.“With my subfuse academic dress at the ready, pre-reading completed and new walking boots waiting in my wardrobe, I started my first week at Oxford’s Lady Margaret Hall in October of last year,” the youngest Nobel Prize Laureate penned.
PHOTO: BRITISH VOGUE“In the beginning I missed my parents, and sometimes even my little brothers, too. They often complain that I don’t miss them as much as they miss me — which is probably true. But that is because life at Oxford is busy,” added Malala.She further stated how hard it was to manage philanthropy and her studies at the same time. “I overwhelmed myself with the possibilities of university life. And I’m grateful for that. I know how lucky I am to have access to an incredible education, lectures, art, sport and new perspectives,” she continued.She recalled her younger years in Swat when she campaigned for the rights of girls’ education. “Now 21, I am able to study at a prestigious university — but I want to live in a world where every girl is able to weigh her future career options in the way I hope to when I graduate,” wrote Malala.
PHOTO: BRITISH VOGUE“Today, there are more than 130 million girls who are out of school around the world. Many are forced to marry as young as 11 or 12 years old, so instead of learning, they are cooking, cleaning and raising children of their own. In many places, poverty forces girls to go to work so they can support their families,” she stated. “Too often in wars and conflicts, girls must flee their homes and their schools. They have no choice. Most of them never go back to the classroom. Some girls brave long walks, risking street harassment and sexual violence, just to get to their school. Some girls have no schools at all.”Talking statistically, she shared that around 130 million girls globally are deprived of basic curriculum and are forced out of schools.“It should be obvious that 130 million out-of-school girls are not just a problem for these young women individually but for our whole world,” Malala went on. “When girls have access to 12 years of education, primary and secondary, they reduce the risk of violent conflict.”
PHOTO: BRITISH VOGUEThe activist commented on how imperative it is to speak out about this grave matter as mostly these girls are succumbed to silence. “Whether you’re a feminist or an economist – or just a person who wants to live in a better world – you should want to see all girls in school. Speak out against injustice when you see it,” she wrote.Malala goes back to Oxford this month as she starts her second year. “My plan is to find a better balance between college work and social life. I want to prioritise the activities that interest me the most and get a better idea of what I want my life to look like post-graduation,” she said. “I don’t know yet what career path I will choose – but I know I’ll keep advocating for girls and women. If one girl with an education can change the world, just imagine what 130 million can do.”

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