Molly Fratianne got involved with Students For Liberty nearly at the beginning. As a student at conservative Ashland University in Ohio, she thought that concern for civil liberties made one left-leaning by default. She went to a seminar and learned about libertarianism, which she called “a third option allowing freedom for the most people and does the most for society.”
As a self-described “do-er” she got an internship at a liberty-minded organization where she heard about Students For Liberty and decided to start a club on campus. She held table events, attended conferences, and even did some communications work for SFL.
Learning from real-world experience
Our philosophy is that students learn more when they’re creating their own path. So, working on an event from planning through execution, promoting causes that they are passionate about, and being in control of the experience every stop of the way is critical. For Fratianne, this was exemplified when she served as MC for our LibertyCon conference. She calls working at the conference and getting to spend time with the speakers “a phenomenal experience all around, having my hand in everything.”
Like so many of our students, Molly Fratianne was prepared for life after graduation because of the real-world experience she had with SFL. “I was prepared for liberty with ideas, knowing what books and podcasts to read and recommend.”
She also said that SFL gave her a boost in life skills. The opportunities “helped me up in my professionalism. I did speaker management, troubleshooting events on-site, conference registration- and another big takeaway was learning to be a go-getter… feeling empowered to take things on. It set me ahead in my career.”
Championing the cause for free speech
In her career, Fratianne is still focused on social change and free speech issues through her work with the Foster-Russell Alliance for Meaningful Expression (FRAME). This organization is focused on diversity, equity, and inclusion for social change from a free speech perspective. “Most programs focus on what makes us different,” Fratianne explained. “We’re coming at it from a perspective of shared humanity. We are all different and have things that make us unique or diverse. It’s flipping diversity on its head to promote ‘inversity’ instead.” In the end, SFL is a “bedrock that launched my career and got me where I am.”
For Molly Fratianne, Students For Liberty meant finding a space on campus to work for what she believes in without getting involved with electoral politics. She said “You can do what you’re passionate about without being alienated by some of the more political stuff.” That’s why our model is worth supporting. “SFL has done something that a lot of young orgs can’t do, specifically a lot of student-focused organizations – grow and sustain. SFL has persevered through so much and continued to make an impact, connect students to opportunities, and share ideas in a way that’s palatable.”
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This piece solely expresses the opinion of the author and not necessarily the organization as a whole. Students For Liberty is committed to facilitating a broad dialogue for liberty, representing a variety of opinions.