Nike unveiled the “Dream Crazier” ad campaign and took the Oscars by storm last night.

The 90-second ad highlights powerful female athletes and the challenges they face because of their gender. The message was strong, powerful and classic Nike – “It’s only crazy until you do it. Just do it”.

“If we show emotion, we are called dramatic.” narrates Serena Williams who is also featured in the ad. Serena who has stood up to racial and gender bias throughout her career is the perfect voice to accompany this empowering video.

The ad focused on showcasing women in sports, a profession that is dominated by men.

Shedding light on the common stereotypes female athletes face, Serena narrates,”If we want to play against men, we are nuts.
 And if we dream of equal opportunity, delusional.

When we stand for something, we’re unhinged.

When we are too good, there is something wrong with us.

And if we get angry, we’re hysterical, irrational or just being crazy”

The video goes on to celebrate trailblazers including Kathrine Switzer (the first woman to run the Boston marathon), Simone Biles, Ibtihaj Mohammad, and Chloe Kim. The ad ends with a call to continue to be crazy. Crazy enough to win medals, break records, and change the sport.

Unfortunately, these challenges are not limited to sports. Women who work in any male-dominated field are forced to face and fight these barriers.

This powerful motivational call to dream big has gone beyond the world of sports. It urges all women and girls to believe in themselves no matter how crazy the world thinks they are.

Many may argue Nike is doing this to build brand loyalty and sell more shoes. But that should not take anything away from the message of the ad campaign. Powerful, inspirational female athletes being celebrated for their hard work, tenacity, and spirit – let us applaud that and be proud of these superwomen. Let us show young girls these role models.

Because sometimes all it takes is a video like this to inspire the next champion.

In science and technology fields women are underrepresented, discriminated and dismissed for their contributions. And those brilliant women who have worked their way to the top of their fields, remain largely invisible to the public eye.

At Smore, we work to spotlight these hidden role models to encourage young girls to embrace their own brilliance. So while we are not heading out to buy Nike’s, this campaign has us feeling super motivated about our own mission.

Here’s to all the crazy women and girls who dare to dream crazy!

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