The Beat Behind GirlsFLI

By Graceley Todd


When Mehrin got accepted into the GirlsFLI program, she had no idea that the program would conclude with her performing a rap for Oscar Award Winning actress Patricia Arquette. Unlike most rappers today Mehrin promises she will only rap about positivity and hopes to unite and uplift people through her music. At the WFLI We Are The Change event at the Hamptons Mehrin stayed true to her words as she rapped purely about her GirlsFLI experience.  Mehrin’s rap received a standing ovation from the crowd, a kiss on the forehead from Carl Nelson (a producer), an enthused “I Love you!” from Latham Thomas (Founder of Mama Glow), and a high five from Patricia Arquette herself. This is just one of the GirlsFLI experiences that Mehrin marked as “life changing”.  Just like her performance, Mehrin speaks with a steady rhythm and definite tone; her voice never wavers. Though she is a confident musician and a straight A STEM-focused student, she struggled to combine her desire to make a difference with her passions of math, science, and music, until she joined GirlsFLI.

GirlsFLI is a program in which young women leaders identify issues in their communities and strategize ways to make a change.  Mehrin picked the topic of STEAM which perfectly combines her love for music, math and science. Self eSTEAM 101 focused on getting young girls involved and excited about Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics. Mehrin described how her group arranged a free, interactive information session in hopes to inspire young girls to consider careers in STEAM fields.  Reflecting on the event Mehrin smiles and praises it as a “major success”, raving about how there was huge turnout from her school and she loved that her community came out to support her.  Mehrin was thrilled about the support she received and loved that she was able to use her talents in music, science and math to make a difference in other girls’ lives.

While Mehrin was impacting the lives of girls in her community, GirlsFLI was making a major impact on her life.  When Mehrin was asked “What does GirlsFLI means to you?” she nodded and responded “GirlsFLI is a lot like music; music is a universal language that unites everyone and that’s what GirlsFLI is”.  

This story was written by Graceley Todd, a WFLI intern this summer whose main task was to tell the stories of the GirlsFLI members. Graceley is a student at Portledge High School in Locust Valley. She is a writer for her school paper and literary magazine.