The stress for finals is stifling and to clear the air, I have compiled a list of passionate and resilient women who will remind you that there is nothing you can't do, even finals.

One for each day of finals week, the amazing role models on this list are inspiring examples of praise-worthy women, helping to make the world a better place for everyone, but especially for women and girls all over the world.

1. Marie Curie

No list about spectacular women is incomplete without the mention of Madam Curie, a Polish physicist, and chemist famous for her work on radioactivity. She was the first woman to win a Nobel Prize, the first person and only woman to win the Nobel prize twice, and the only person to win two Nobel Prizes in separate fields. In a 2009 poll carried out by New Scientist, she was voted the "most inspirational woman in science".

2. Amelia Earhart

Another inspirational woman, Amelia Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean. Her passion is something that makes me never want to settle for doing anything less than I love. She also wrote best-selling books about her flying experiences and was instrumental in the formation of The Ninety-Nines, an organization for female pilots.

3. Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama focuses on programs and projects around the world, such as anti-obesity initiatives and pushes for women to received education around the globe. A fashion icon, a devoted mother, and an accomplished lawyer and writer, she is a woman of great formidability and passion. She is one of my major icons.

4. Serena Williams

Serena Williams has succeeded in a sport that is historically associated with white, affluent players. Further, tennis is a sport that is constantly under scrutiny for large gender pay gaps. Williams has had numerous brand endorsements, her own clothing line, has her own foundation, and built a school in Africa for the underprivileged. Perhaps, most importantly, she has dealt with criticism of her race, body type and temperament by remaining confident, proving to be a role model for everyone to accept themselves against all odds.

5. Yara Shahidi


When we look at female role models, it is easy to just look at women who are well established in their careers, but actress Yara Shahidi is using her burgeoning career to speak up on women's rights. With her strong social media presence, Shahidi has been making headlines as she uses her platform to represent those young women who feel underrepresented. She speaks up about the representation of women of color on TV and how important it is for girls to see themselves on the screen in a positive light.

6. Jameela Jamil

Not only a successful actress, Jameela Jamil is a body confidence advocate who isn't afraid to call out celebrities for promoting 'dangerous' diet aides and brands for photoshop and whitewashing. A fantastic example of women supporting women, her instagram is something that I check every day.

7. Elizabeth Warren

The first female senator of Massachusetts and a candidate for the 2020 American Presidential election, Elizabeth Warren is a fantastic role model. Her strong beliefs in affordable and accessible education as well as gender equality have led her to be the voice of the future. Senator Warren is a big proponent of bringing young people into the political conversation and fighting for legislation that often gets overlooked. The phrase "nevertheless she persisted" refers to her.

A female role model does not have to be a celebrity. She is ANY woman you look up to. She is a woman who makes a difference, whether it is in the little things she does in her everyday life or the grand gestures made in the public eye. Being a female role model requires confidence not rooted solely in career or status, but in seeing the value in herself.

Creating a space for women's voices to be heard is key since historically they have been overlooked and silenced (see Rosalind Franklin, The US Presidents, Shirley Chisholm, Amelia Earhart, any history book). Women often have to work much harder than their male counterparts just to be heard.

It is easy for girls to look at the media and become discouraged when they do not see themselves represented. However, our female role models continue to show us that women are making tremendous strides in our society and are the catalysts for change. Celebrating these women is one of the ways we can appreciate female role models, but supporting women in our everyday lives are how we can take action. We cannot succeed alone, but with a support system and mentors to help, success is inevitable.