Michaels: A PULLATracker journey, inspiring women to support women

"PULLATracker inspires femininity and ensures safety, as women inspire other women." - via @pullatracker on Instagram

As a young woman who has grown up without my mother in my life, I always felt that I had this loss of someone to idolize. Someone who I could look up to and learn from with regard to different aspects of life, from navigating relationships to independence and femininity. In return, I found myself idolizing other women in my life, whether it was teachers, coworkers, or my friends’ moms. I have found guidance and admiration for other women who have come and gone in my life, as there are things to be learned from everyone, especially when you are missing a vital person to learn these things from.

Coming to college, I noticed I was surrounded by so many people who inspired me, and over my time here at Rowan, these people have helped me grow. Most notably the women I have met, close friends of mine who are either older, my age, or younger than me have become those women I look up to for a plethora of different reasons. Some have taught me how to be better with fashion and girly things like hair and makeup, some have taught me new ways of kindness or to stand up for myself, and others have inspired me to embrace my femininity and to be courageous and powerful in all that I do. 

One of the most prominent and inspiring women in my life right now is a young woman I met during the fall semester of my sophomore year, in a journalism class. The goal of the class was to create a website, on the topic of our choosing. She was working on a website to help fellow pre-med students study for their MCAT, as she was a psychology major with a minor in journalism as part of the Martinson Honors College. On track to follow pre-med, she was aspiring to be a medical news anchor.

In my eyes, I was just an aspiring journalist, a writer at best and that was all I had going for myself. I was on campus for my first semester, I lacked all sense of organization and I felt young and immature. She, however, was a year older, in the honors college, was always put together, and was always on top of everything. I began to look up to her for her mind and her soul. She met us in every class with a bright smile and words of encouragement with every assignment. I don’t think there was ever a day she seemed off, she embodied positivity with every movement. 

She has since graduated with a BA in psychology and dropped her dream of going pre-med. She is now attending Rowan’s College of Business to get her MBA with a concentration in entrepreneurship. She is on track to be an esteemed businesswoman with an app she created to keep women, and college students alike, safe on their college campuses. She has won multiple awards, preaches femininity and for women to support women, and remains the busiest person I know. 

Her name is Siena Rampulla, founder of PULLATracker, and although she may be just a year older than I am, she is the most inspiring woman I know. 

Being able to watch a fellow student, a fellow woman, embark on a journey like hers has pushed me to be more inspired in my own work. Knowing someone that I have known can become so successful through hard work, determination, and carrying themself with grace makes me want to do the same. 

Recently I sat down with her to talk about the launch of PULLATracker, which comes out March 1. We discussed her journey as a whole with this and she said something to me that made me appreciate her even more, following a complement to my writing and my character. 

“I appreciate you and you really have been here on this entire journey. Holy shit, that’s awesome,” said Rampulla. 

From powering through creating a website for a journalism class to voting for her during the New Venture competition when she first created her business (which was directed towards safety for American women visiting Europe), to congratulating her for winning the competition a year later, and now patiently awaiting the launch of an app that will help myself and other students feel safer walking around our campus. I have watched it all, and I have supported her through the entire thing, empowering myself to do more with my passions. 

She has taught me so much about femininity and the power of supporting other women throughout this time of knowing her. She has shared guidance with me when it came to carrying on with grace after experiencing fallout with friends. Coming from a sorority background, she knows that women are not always supportive and kind, yet she would never share this pettiness in return; expressing how even people who have wronged her still deserve kindness and respect. She taught me that it is a tell of character to remain kind in all that you do, no matter how others act. 

She supported me as I stepped away from a very unhealthy relationship, sharing her own experiences to let me know that I am not alone. Encouraging me to believe that things get better, no matter what I have endured. 

She has shown me the power that femininity holds, and that woman can make it in a “man’s world.” Women in the business realm do not have it easy. When we recently sat to talk she shared that oftentimes, judges can occasionally be sexist, or that men would act as if they want to talk business, but in reality, they just want to flirt. This should never discourage any woman though, and she is the embodiment of this courage. She has turned pink into power, something for predators to be fearful of. The color pink has become the symbol for being PULLA Protected, PULLATracker’s slogan. She has taught me to never bat an eye at anyone who looks down on you because you are a woman. 

My favorite conversation I have ever had with her was a discussion of a man offering to purchase her app from her, in which she responded that she would never sell her company to a man, no matter the price. Money is not important to her, but others’ ensurance of safety is, especially fellow women. Knowing that she put immense time, studies, and focus into the app makes me feel safer and even more proud to support her. Taking the extra time to assure her app would be as flawless as humanly possible, with money at the back of her mind, is insatiably noble. 

On behalf of so many students on this campus, I am so excited to be able to download the PULLATracker app and feel safe. But, more importantly, I am so excited to support this fellow woman who inspires me. PULLATracker inspires femininity and ensures safety, as women inspire other women.

My point in sharing all of this is to express that to be proud of your friends, and to find inspiration rather than jealousy for your peers, is imperative to your growth as a human being. I have had bittersweet luck in growing up without my mom, growing up without a parent pushes you to find growth through others around you. And so, I share this with you to encourage you to not only support the people around you but to follow others on their journeys and find inspiration from them. 

If you are a woman, support the women around you. If you are a man, support your boys and your girls. If you are a person, support the people around you. You never know what you may learn about yourself from others when you open your heart and your mind to the possibilities of what you can learn from others.

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