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Brittni Gulotty: Find Your Voice at UAlbany

Brittni Gulotty has never been afraid of change. After graduating from a small high school, she wanted to attend college on a large campus like UAlbany where she could study social injustice.

Brittni Gulotty, in her cap and gown at Commencement
Brittni Gulotty, at her UAlbany Graduation

The University at Albany gave her focus and direction. “It’s important to know why something is the way it is before you can attempt to change it,” said Brittni. “UAlbany helps you find your voice.”

While juggling a demanding course load women’s studies and public policy, she accepted a friend’s invitation to attend a meeting of UAlbany VOX: Voices for Planned Parenthood, a newly formed campus chapter of Planned Parenthood’s nationwide effort to mobilize college students on its behalf.

Her involvement with VOX proved challenging. After beginning an internship at Upper Hudson Planned Parenthood (UHPP), funding cuts endangered the organization. Brittni recounts, “On campus, students sought clarification about the impending situation and posed questions about the threats.”

Leveraging UAlbany’s community environment, Brittni articulated Planned Parenthood’s position by “tabling” in the Campus Center and by distributing flyers. Brittni’s knowledge and experience with UHPP helps her engage students on such topics as access to birth control and testing centers.

“As a student leader, you have to be patient and remember that challenges occur in every aspect of your daily life,” said Brittni. “The difference is how you deal with an issue. It can feel overwhelming at times, but in the end it solidifies that you are serving an important purpose on a university campus.”

Brittni found her work with Planned Parenthood aligned perfectly with her majors. While studying the crusade to establish health care rights, she drew correlations from her education to her volunteer work. “Volunteering taught me how important resilience and passion are when choosing a career path,” she said.

“As soon as I could, I declared my double major and have never looked back. I saw the connection between women’s rights and how public policy worked as a tool for social change, which greatly influenced my later decision to do an internship at UHPP.”

A graduating senior, Brittni is now president of UAlbany’s VOX chapter. During her time at UAlbany, she was also involved with UAlbany Women’s Rugby and the Feminist Teaching Collective.

After graduation, she intends to stay involved with Planned Parenthood and enter UAlbany’s master’s program in women’s studies.

For more graduate profiles, visit our 2012 Commencement page.

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