“Building Bridges to the World” a global education awareness event was held  Thursday, November 21, 2013 at the Center for Connected Medicine in downtown Pittsburgh. The event was well attended with close to 100 people ranging in age from teenagers to young and middle aged adults. One of the big highlights of the evening was the great performances from the girls in the PRYSE (Pittsburgh Refugee Youth Summer Enrichment) program who performed some dances to Nepali songs.

Building Bridges

The girls from PRYSE Academy did a great job keeping the crowd entertained

I had a personal encounter during the evening that still makes me smile when I think about it, but also reminds me why I feel proud to be a board member of the foundation. Towards the end of the evening, one of the young girls who danced as part of the cultural performance asked the onsite technical support person if she could play a You Tube video on one of the large screens. He turned to her and then turned to me and said “I dunno, you are going to have to ask my boss.”  The young girl asked him “Who is your boss?”. He said, pointing to me “she is my boss”. The girl’s eyes widened as she asked me enthusiastically “You are his boss?”

I replied “Yes, see what happens when girls become educated…boys start working for them.”  She giggled.

For me, it was a poignant moment because I hoped that this girl would see that girls and women are capable of being leaders, and education gives us the opportunities to do so.

Cheryl Paxton-Hughes
Executive Director, UPMC Center for Connected Medicine
Board Member, Rukmini Foundation

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