When talking about young activists as part of Women’s History Month, we simply must include Yara Sayeh Shahidi. She is an actress, model, and activist at just 21 years old. You may recognize her most notably for her role in Black-ish and the spin-off series Grown-ish.

Yara Shahidi is currently at Harvard University studying Sociology and African American Studies. She founded Eighteen x 18, a platform to encourage young people to vote during the upcoming midterm elections. She has also partnered with the Young Women’s Leadership Network providing online mentorship opportunities to lower-income students in hopes to end poverty through education. This young woman is a multiple faceted activist whose efforts have been seen and recognized by former first lady Michelle Obama (Michelle wrote a recommendation letter for Yara to enter Harvard. Imagine having that in your application!) An unofficial spokesperson for Generation Z, Yara inspires her millions of followers to strive for what they want. She has been told multiple times she has to choose between education and entertainment, but she doesn’t think that has to be the way of life for her. Between her photoshoots, being an ambassador for Chanel, a panel participant on inclusion, and social media activism, she wants to be a regular student experiencing college life. After college, however, she has aspirations to one day be president. Her maturity, discipline, and motivation are admirable qualities Yara has held throughout her life and we can’t wait to see her continue to reach incredible heights.