16 Feminist Graduation Quotes

by Megan Hanson
Putra Kurniawan / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images

When I was finishing up school, it definitely would have been helpful to have a few feminist graduation quotes to look to for guidance. Graduation was always a bittersweet moment for me. There is the pride of achieving the degree that you've worked for, and the triumph of looking back on all of the difficult moments that you didn't think you would make it through. I spent more than a few nights in the library wondering how to make it through college without going insane. But I'm a creature of comfort, too. Saying goodbye to old friends (at least for a while), hunting for a job, changing cities, and being outside of a structured school environment dulled some of my graduation excitement.

I had a few friends who effortlessly transitioned from their undergrad studies straight to grad school or the career that they had always wanted. If that's where you are, then that's amazing and I am excited for you. However, if you're feeling lost or stressed like I was, then remember this quote from A.A. Milne, the author of Winnie the Pooh: "You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." Here are 16 more inspirational, feminist quotes to remind you to trust in yourself, and get excited for all the possibilities that await you.

1. "My idea of feminism is self-determination, and it’s very open-ended: every woman has the right to become herself, and do whatever she needs to do." — Ani DiFranco

2. "Let me take a minute to say that I love bossy women...for me, a bossy woman is someone to search out and celebrate. A bossy woman is someone who cares and commits and is a natural leader." — Amy Poehler

3. "The woman who does not require validation from anyone is the most feared individual on the planet." — Mohadesa Najumi

4. "The kind of beauty I want most is the hard-to-get kind that comes from within — strength, courage, dignity." — Ruby Dee

5. "Never apologize for being sensitive or emotional. Let this be a sign that you’ve got a big heart and aren’t afraid to let others see it. Showing your emotions is a sign of strength." — Brigitte Nicole

6. "A woman is like a tea bag. You never know how strong she is until she gets in hot water." — Eleanor Roosevelt

7. "Don’t waste your energy trying to educate or change opinions; go over, under, through, and opinions will change organically when you’re the boss. Or they won’t. Who cares? Do your thing, and don’t care if they like it." — Tina Fey

8. "Because what else are we going to do? Say no? Say no to an opportunity that may be slightly out of our comfort zone? Quiet our voice because we are worried it is not perfect? I believe great people do things before they are ready." — Amy Poehler

9. "Whatever you choose, however many roads you travel, I hope that you choose not to be a lady. I hope you will find some way to break the rules and make a little trouble out there. And I also hope that you will choose to make some of that trouble on behalf of women." — Nora Ephron

10. "I’m going to college. I don’t care if it ruins my career. I’d rather be smart than a movie star." — Natalie Portman

11. "Who run the world? Girls." — Beyonce

12. "I stand for girls wanting to be sexy and dance, but also for having a strong sense of themselves. If you got a big ol' butt? Shake it! Who cares? That doesn't mean you shouldn't be graduating from college." — Nicki Minaj

13. "Women are leaders everywhere you look — from the CEO who runs a Fortune 500 company to the housewife who raises her children and heads her household. Our country was built by strong women, and we will continue to break down walls and defy stereotypes." — Nancy Pelosi

14. "I'm tough, I'm ambitious, and I know exactly what I want. If that makes me a bitch, OK." — Madonna

15. "The question isn't who's going to let me; it's who's going to stop me." — Ayn Rand

16. "I say if I'm beautiful. I say if I'm strong. You will not determine my story — I will." — Amy Schumer

Images: Putra Kurniawan / EyeEm/EyeEm/Getty Images; Giphy (2)