Webster hosts Abby Wambach during Virtual Headliner Series


Abby Wambach stressed the importance of empowering women during the seminar.

Webster University brought in two-time Olympic gold medalist, FIFA Women’s World Cup champion and member of the National Soccer Hall of Fame, Abby Wambach to talk about Women’s History Month.

The event took place on Zoom and was available to all Webster students, faculty, and staff. It was moderated by alumnus Jenna Hopkins. 

The hour event discussed many topics including women empowerment, equal pay, the importance of diversity and Wambach’s personal soccer experiences.

More specifically, Wambach discussed the unequal pay between the men’s and women’s national soccer teams. Two years ago, the women’s team filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Soccer Federation and the case was dismissed. Currently, they are trying to repeal the case. Since 2015, the U.S. women’s soccer team has brought in more money than the men.

“They basically said we will give you everything equal, except for the pay,” Wambach said.  

Student and Webster soccer player, Devan Pranchke, attended the event and noted how important it is to have these conversations. Pranchke also said that as a female athlete and dealing with the same issues that Wambach is fighting for makes these conversations more motivating. 

“We are just as important as men. We deserve justice and equal rights just like men do. We deserve to get treated equally, such as payment and being shown on T.V. equally,” Pranchke said.  

Wambach emphasized on the idea of power and using your unique power as a woman. Wambach discussed the Women’s National Basketball Association and how they used their power to control the Senate.

“What’s interesting is women are so willing to risk it all. Women athletes do not have that much to lose, but everything to gain,” Wambach said.

Wambach also discussed the importance of setbacks. More specifically, being injured during sports. This resonated with both Hopkins and Pranchke. The two women compared her words to their own setbacks

“As a Webster women’s soccer player, I took her message to heart. It made me want to drive more because I am still in that human stage and feeling all those emotions as an injured player. After my injury, it is time for me to get up and show everybody who I am as a female athlete,” Pranchke said. 

Wambach ended the discussion with a key takeaway: women need to support other women. 

“We can always score so [many] more goals together,” Wambach said. 

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Kelly Bowen
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I am a journalism major. I play on the women’s soccer team at Webster. I enjoy coffee, Mexican food and watching The Real Housewives of Orange County with my sister.