SeeHer Story Celebrates Queen of Pop Lady Gaga in Episode 19
SeeHer Story airs every week on PEOPLE.com and @PeopleTV social handles
Lady Gaga is giving us a "Million Reasons" to celebrate her this week.
The singer, songwriter and fashion icon has changed what it means to be a pop star — she has dedicated her life to reminding others to stay true to themselves and has continued to promote kindness throughout her accomplished career.
This week, SeeHer Story honors the incredible role model and her passion for inspiring and empowering others through music and beyond.
Katie Couric Media and PEOPLE partnered to create the second season of SeeHer Story, a weekly digital video series produced to celebrate various female trailblazers from the past 100 years to today.
Born Stefani Germanotta, the New York City native found her love for music at a young age.
She was accepted to NYU's competitive Tisch School of the Arts at 18.
Her years of being bullied for being "unique" followed her through college; her classmates even created a Facebook group called "Stefani Germanotta, you will never be famous.”
She soon would prove them wrong — the singer dropped out of school after a year to pursue a professional music career and became Lady Gaga full-time.
Gaga released her first album, The Fame, in 2007 after working as a songwriter for Interscope Records artists like Britney Spears.
Her album was a huge success, featuring smash singles including "Just Dance" and "Poker Face."
And while her music catapulted her to superstardom, her fashion choices (including the infamous meat dress, above) made her a true icon.
"I never thought I’d be asking Cher to hold my meat purse," she once said.
Gaga has become more than just a superstar to her fans, who call themselves "Little Monsters." She's not afraid to show her vulnerable side, clapping back at body-shamers or opening up about her own mental health struggles.
"I became very depressed and very sad and didn’t want to be myself," she told PEOPLE in an interview last month while discussing her sixth studio album, Chromatica.
She's also a fierce advocate and ally for the LGBTQ+ community. Her 2011 hit "Born This Way" encouraged people of all orientations to love themselves.
In 2012, the pop star started the Born This Way Foundation, which aims to support young people and actively encourage kindness.
She's also not afraid to take on new challenges — after establishing herself globally as the princess of pop, she released a Grammy-winning jazz album with music legend Tony Bennett.
She also became a star on the big and small screen, winning a Golden Globe for American Horror Story and starring alongside Bradley Cooper in A Star is Born in 2018.
The song "Shallow," which Gaga wrote for the movie, won an Academy Award for best original song.
Gaga also took home two Grammys for the track in 2019, including best song written for visual media and best pop duo/group performance.
“It’s not about winning, it’s about not giving up. If you have a dream, fight for it," Gaga said in her acceptance speech.
SeeHer Story will be a regular feature in PEOPLE’s print edition and the weekday morning newsletter Wake-Up Call with Katie Couric.
"SeeHer Story celebrates the important contributions of bold women from the past 100 years who have changed our country forever,” said Couric in a statement. “We hope recognizing them and telling their stories will not only give them their due but will also inspire the next generation of leaders.”
She added, “Together with Meredith and PEOPLE, I’m so excited to bring back a second season of stories of women whose names you may know — and put those whose achievements are not as well-known — front and center so we can celebrate them as well.”