Holly Pilcavage

You Are the Solution

Social Entrepreneurship

First Year Success


Life is a series of collected moments and your participation is requested. We often tell ourselves what we can’t do rather than what we can. We become what we want to be by consistently being what we want to become each day. Your experiences are not only shaped by the decisions you make each and every day, but they are also shaped by the people you surround yourself with. Holly wants to know: What is your why?


Months after graduating with her Master’s, Holly took a step back from life and began to reflect on everything happening around her. It seemed as though family members felt troubled, friends felt behind, acquaintances felt disconnected, and strangers felt worthless. Holly decided to create a project to positive foster human development called Project Wednesday.  


As individuals, we need to ignite a small flame and continuously add the motivation required to keep the fire within us growing.  This keynote gets students thinking about their role in their organization, their community, and this world as a whole. We are the solution to the issues we experience around us day in and day out - large and small. What do those first steps look like? How does one take that leap to creating something new or sharing an idea that could potentially change the lives around them?


Learning Outcomes: Participants will be able to better understand their position in their organization, community, and society; consider problems they see in their everyday world; and contemplate ways to initiate meaningful change.


Ideal Audiences: Leadership development, Wellness, Women's Empowerment, Entrepreneurship

Formats: Keynote

Brewing First Year Connections

The first year of college can be intimidating. Finding your way around campus, juggling your studies, and above all, making new friends. We've all been there.


Even in her twenties, with college behind her, Holly found that making new connections wasn’t the easiest thing. Instead of accepting this reality, she decided to schedule virtual and in-person coffee dates with anyone who wanted to join. In the beginning, every time she sat down for the next video call, she felt extremely nervous. What if we don't have anything to talk about? What if it's awkward? What if, what if, what if?


This reminded Holly a lot of her freshman year of college. These same insecurities about creating new relationships existed then too.


The more coffee dates she went on, the easier things became. Talking about anything and everything felt more natural. Confidence began creeping up. She was making real connections again - real, genuine connections. The kinds of connections so deeply craved by students new to campus.

In this keynote, Holly shares the numerous lessons she learned about relationship building  in order to help students overcome the anxiety of meeting new people, take on exciting challenges, and try something completely different.


Learning Outcomes: Participants will identify fears and anxieties related to making new campus connections; explore strategies to overcome these fears and develop ways to replicate these strategies beyond the first year of college.


Ideal Audiences: First Year Experience

Formats: Keynote

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