IWD 2020: Jess Honan, Bursary Recipient

To mark 2020 International Women’s Day (#EachforEqual), NCWQ is profiling an impressive women each day in and around the 8th March. These featured young women are past NCWQ Bursary Recipients, and have demonstrated incredible leadership, success, community service, intelligence and commitment to their personal and professional passions. In today’s feature, past bursary recipient Jess Honan shares her thoughts.

To learn more about the bursary program, keep an eye on our website in the coming month. 

What were the benefits to you in being a 2019 NCWQ bursary recipient? 
In 2017, I went to Germany as a Rotary Youth Exchange student and lived with a family in Duisburg. Thanks to the bursary, I could finally afford to go back to Germany and see my host family again. Not only was this a great opportunity to revive my German language skills, but it also meant a lot to me to be able to spend Christmas with my second family, after not having seen them in two years. 

What are your goals for this year

Going into my third year of arts/law degrees, my main focus for 2020 remains to stay as engaged with international humanitarian law as possible, and work towards my 5-languages-by-25 dream. Specifically though, I want to do more advocacy work when it comes to rural Australia and its role in Australia’s foreign policy agenda.

 What is your personal mantra or self-talk that you use to keep yourself on track in pursuing your aspirations?

I have a little sheet of paper on the top of my laptop that says ‘w.w.h.d.?’ – what would Hermione do? Having grown up with the Harry Potter series, I always aspired to be exactly like Hermione Granger. Reminding me to be more like Hermione always pushes me to put in the extra hours when I just want to give up. I have always wanted to be as successful, smart and strong as Hermione, and this little sheet reminds me that if I continue to work hard, I can be.

Who have been your most significant female role models?

As a Harry Potter fanatic from a very young age, I have always wanted to be Hermione Granger. Aside from being one of very few unashamedly intelligent female figures in children’s stories as I was growing up, I also appreciate how dynamic a character Hermione is. She might be powerful, wickedly clever and vivaciously ambitious, but is also very down-to-earth, sensitive and stubborn. To me, this personified Hermione – she was more than a literary character, but a real human with human characteristics that I could endeavour to emmulate. 

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