Justyce Millan is a double major in psychology and sociology. She started attending WNMU in 2016 and will be graduating in May. Millan played for the WNMU Softball Team for three years, was the President for the Student Athletic Advisory Committee (SAAC), is a member of the National Society of Leadership and Success, and is an active member of Mustang’s Care, a service-learning organization. She currently has a work-study position at the Center for Student Success.
The Mustang Newspaper Staff had the opportunity to interview Justyce Millan to celebrate Women’s History Month.
Q: Who is the most influential woman you know? How does she inspire you?
A: Actually, I feel it is hard to fully answer your question because I have my grandma, mom, and my auntie in my life. The three of them have raised me altogether and influenced me and made me the woman I am today. Whereas, if I did not have all three of them contributing, I feel I wouldn’t be the strong woman I am today. Out of all of them, I think my grandma is the most influential because she taught all of us. She is the most influential to me because of how she treats others. She chooses to treat others equally and is compassionate. She is a strong person, and she doesn’t let anybody take advantage of her. She has always stood up for herself, a very strong-willed, godly person, and she’s always taught me to take the higher road and to work harder if things don’t go your way. I was Homecoming Queen for this year, but I didn’t want people to vote for me through popularity. I wanted it to be more like, “She’s a good role model.” I was taught to do things and don’t expect anything back.
Q: Do you think women have equal rights to men today? Why or why not?
A: Are we fully equal? I don’t know because I will see something in the government going on and all you see are men! Men, Men, Men! Now, we are starting to see more women step in, which is nice, but I think men are still the “leading role.” I do feel women are rising up to the challenge. You see more women out there. This year, you saw a woman coaching in the NFL. You see women doing more every day. They are being more outspoken, which is good to see. The other day, I heard someone say we live in a “man’s world,” and I thought to myself, “Well, we’re going to change that!” For some jobs, men get paid more for the same position a woman can do. I also don’t think that they have equal rights in the athletic world. I play softball here at WNMU. I see fame men get for playing sports. I play professional softball, but you don’t see as many women teams as men teams. That is lacking too. The woman can do things just as well as men can. The female NFL coach didn’t win the Super Bowl, but she got there! I wish that everything would be equal in all aspects of knowledge, physical ability, and other things. I think women are rising. It is the twenty-first century!
Q: As a woman, what are challenges you believe remain in today’s society?
A: I think the stereotypes are challenges for women that remain in today’s society. For example, some people judge and say things like, “She’s a woman. She can’t do that because she’s not strong enough or she can’t do that because she doesn’t have the education. She’s a woman because of this or that.” I think the challenges are just overcoming the stereotypes, but not getting mad about it. It is by being the bigger person. We could do this by showing them that we could do it! I think we do a lot in the background and people don’t see it. If we do more, in the public eye, I feel like that’s amazing. I think the challenges are just for everybody to see it. Hopefully, everybody can soon see that women are equal or even better than men.
Q: How does it feel to be successful here at Western New Mexico University?
A: I feel like I’m never going to be content when it comes to being successful. To graduate in the four years, which was my goal, and I’m doing it, feels amazing! It feels good to be able to accomplish so many things as well as being able to be active here at Western and in the community here in Silver City. I think being a woman and seeing people see me as a role model is exciting. I will have friends be like, “You’re going to help with Mustangs Care, then I’m going to go with you,” or “You’re studying, I better study too.” It is good to be the leader in that sense. I’ll get other women to come with me, and it is good to be able to have those standards to reach.
Q: Why is it essential to have a month to honor women?
A: It is important to have a month to honor women because I think we are left in the background sometimes. I think it’s a great month to think about the women we need in our life. We can thank them whether it is our mom, grandma, or friend! Thank her because a woman has a strong role in today’s society.
This is one in a series of articles commemorating Women’s History Month.