Amanda Nygun

Amanda Nygun

Amanda Nguyen isn’t your average twenty-four year old. She graduated in 2013 with a B.A. in Astrophysics, followed by an external project examining the rights of women with disabilities. From there Amanda interned with NASA as part of their programme to increase their outreach to a younger generation of space enthusiasts. However, Amanda is best known as a campaigner for the rights of women when it comes to sexual assault. Particularly, Amanda is interested in the standardisation of rights for women when it comes to processing rape kits, after her own harrowing experience of being raped in 2014.

After her ordeal, Amanda submitted her evidence in the form of a rape kit to the state of Massachusetts in 2014. However, even though this state guarantees keeping a victim’s rape kit for fifteen years, Amanda was told at the hospital that her rape kit could be destroyed in six months. This lead Amanda to start to campaign for other rape victims, male and female, and to standardise the laws on the processing of rape kits. Amanda set up the organisation Rise that puts the issues of survivors of rape before government and state bodies.

In February of this year, the Democratic party presented ‘The Sexual Assault Survivor’s Rights Act’ into the senate of the U.S. Government. This bill will make sure victims of sexual assault have access to counsellors, legal, and medical advice. Amanda is one of the driving forces behind this bill, after her aforementioned experience left her travelling across the state of Massachusetts in a bid to have her rape kit saved for future processing. Amanda took her experiences, and those of countless other victims of sexual assault, to the U.S. Government and highlighted the plight of victims of sexual assault, resulting in the above bill being supported by countless organisations and institutions across the U.S., including the Democratic party, Harvard University, and Planned Parenthood.

Amanda is an inspiration for both men and women whom have experienced sexual assault or know someone that has. Her steadfast determination to improve the lives of other people like her means that in the future men and women won’t have to battle legislation to have their evidence processed in order to start a prosecution case. Amanda’s varied career is also an inspiration to those people who have interests in different areas by saying to people that you can be an activist and an Astronaut just like Amanda. That essentially you should not limit yourself to one career path and stand up for others less fortunate than yourself, just like Amanda has done.

-Rachel Sayers
Junior Girl
Girl Museum Inc.

Pin It on Pinterest