These inspiring women were once just average girls, going to school, studying hard, and hoping to make a difference in the world one day. Little did they know at the time of taking these photos what powerhouses they'd grow up to be, and how they'd inspire millions of young girls to reach for their own dreams.
In honor of Women's History Month, Classmates, has dug up old high school photos powerful women like Oprah Winfrey, Melinda Gates, Hillary Clinton, and Michelle Obama to see what they looked like before they made it big. And spoiler alert: They looked just like regular young women!
From sports and the arts, to tech and science, politics and business, these women have made huge strides in their careers, opening up paths for future generations of girls to walk in, and setting an important precedent that with hard work and dedication, girls can be whatever they aspire to be, that gender is not a limitation.
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Scroll down below to take a look at the amazing throwback photos, and get inspired to learn more about them during Women's History Month.
1. Hillary Clinton
First female presidential nominee of a major party.
2. Natalie Coughlin
American competition swimmer and twelve-time Olympic medalist.
3. Mildred Dresselhaus
First woman to win the US National Medal of Science in Engineering.
4. Dominique Dawes
First female African-American gymnast to win an individual medal at the Olympics.
5. Sally Ride
The first woman to explore outer space.
6. Sara Blakely
Founder of Spanx, first self-made, female billionaire to sign the Giving Pledge, promising to give at least half her wealth to charity.
7. Oprah Winfrey
First female African-American billionaire.
8. Joan Benoit
The first-ever women's Olympic marathon champion.
9. Dr. Mae Jemison
First female African-American astronaut.
10. Kathryn Bigelow
First woman to win the Academy Award for Best Director.
11. MaryLou Retton
First American to win an Olympic gold medal in gymnastics.
12. Mary Claire King
Human rights activist and geneticist who discovered the "breast cancer gene."
13. Melinda Gates
Philanthropist and co-founder of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
14. Michelle Obama
First African-American First Lady of the United States.