Planes fly over Providence
Future leaders of San Antonio, the nation, and the world gathered at Providence Catholic School to witness a trio of planes fly over the campus. The 2020 G-7 Summit gone awry? No, simply members of the class of 2021 celebrating one of the rituals of senior year, the senior yearbook photo session, this time coinciding with the celebration of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, and commemorated by female pilots flying their planes over women’s institutions in San Antonio.
In 1920, US women gained the right to vote with the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, which reads, “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.” The pilots, members of Women in Aviation International, made a 30-minute flight over San Antonio, creating a flight plan that traveled over women’s institutions. Providence Catholic School, educating young women since 1951, was among them.
What did it mean to the seniors who witnessed the event? In unison, these young women spoke of being empowered by the education they have received at Providence. They feel confident in their leadership abilities and feel they have found their voice. Says Sarah Hauck, “When I first came here I feel like I wasn’t much of a leader but I had a big voice. Providence has taught me how to use my voice…for what I believe in, to benefit myself and other people…I participated in RYLA (Rotary Youth Leadership Awards) which taught me that there are also leaders on the side who might not talk as much but still help to get things done…. Every type of leader…is beneficial to making one unit, and making a team.”
Kristen Howell adds that a woman’s vote and voice can change government: “For everyone in general it’s important to vote because it is our voice in the community… When we don’t get the opportunity to vote, we don’t have our say in the policies, in the people who are in office - they don’t really get to represent us. When the majority wins, they represent the majority of the people, the majority of the voices in the world. [When I can vote] I will use my voice because …there are still things that need to be changed on the gender equality side that women need to use their vote to try and stop and to keep everyone equal. Providence has taught me everything I need to know through the government class: what leaders are going to run and how they run and what each stands for and knowing what the president does beside the US senators is very important because they do different things and they have different jobs that can do different things for us. In Congress they …have more voice and we can get our voice heard on that level especially talking to senators and our representatives.”
Victoria Trevino is a newly registered voter: “I am going to voice my opinion in government and community change. I am excited to vote.”
Seniors also give advice to younger Provet sisters. Savannah Pearson advises, “Stay true to yourself, keep your grades up, and over achieve…Always make a game plan before you go into your mission so you know what you want to achieve and why you’re there.”
Rebecca Rodriguez says that an education at Providence teaches young women “to stand up for what we believe in and not stop; do whatever you need to do and not let anyone stop you. With Providence being an all-girls school, it gives us the opportunities to be in positions of leadership without having to compete against men.”
So whether flying in the air or speaking their truth on the ground, women – and especially Providence women – will exercise their right to vote.
Perez, Miranda. Media Consortium, 27 August 2020. Interview.