A STUDENT'S MISSION TO HELP OTHER WOMEN
As a film and television student in the Eugene M. and Christine E. Lynn College of Communication and Design, senior Faith Thomas is helping create social change. She's combining her passion for giving back with the skills she’s learning at Lynn University. Her mission: To tell the story of those less fortunate.
Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Thomas has six sisters and one brother. Despite the responsibility of raising seven children, Thomas remembers her parents always donated time to those in need. That changed when Thomas's father was involved in a debilitating car accident in 2007.
“It was a humbling experience,” Thomas says. "All those people we had helped were now helping us.”
With only a single income to support her family, Thomas was unsure about her future and whether she could attend college. In 2016, Thomas received a scholarship that allowed her to begin studying at Lynn, but she knew she would need more support to accomplish her dreams. By the summer of 2018, her worries were gone. Along with seven other students, Thomas earned an Ambassador Corps Scholarship from the Cordes Foundation, which allowed her to enroll in Lynn's Ambassador Corps. Thomas learned that she'd earned it while eating lunch in the Elmore Dining Commons.
“When I learned I got the scholarship, I ran around the dining commons telling everyone,” said Thomas.
Through Ambassador Corps, Thomas began fulfilling her dreams of helping others. She traveled to Rwanda to work at the Urugo Women’s Opportunity Center, a nonprofit funded by Women for Women International. Urugo, an eco-lodge that houses tourists who visit the Akagera National Park, promotes economic empowerment for women by providing financial literacy, job training and health services. Thomas served as the nonprofit’s marketing director. Leveraging her knowledge of social media and digital marketing, she advertised the eco-lodge on booking sites such as Booking.com, Orbitz and Airbnb.
"I always try to have a positive attitude, no matter what."
And, she didn't stop there. On the coattails of her Rwanda trip, Thomas created "It's H.E.R Business," an organization designed to empower abused women. It's H.E.R. business, which stands for "Helping Everyone Rebuild," is a passion project with a personal twist. It's H.E.R. Business enables abused women to tell their stories, which helps them and Thomas increase awareness for victims of sexual and domestic abuse. "It's to help start a dialogue about a topic that's been taboo for too long," Thomas says. One day, Thomas hopes It's H.E.R. Business will be known state- and nationwide.
From Atlanta to Rwanda, Thomas believes her steadfast, positive attitude helped her get where she is today. She sees her positivity as a tool to help motivate others and make any situation better.
"There's always something to be happy about, even in the toughest of circumstances," Thomas says.
To leave her legacy at Lynn, she encourages her classmates to follow suit—by giving back.