February 23, 2017

SIU to celebrate Women’s History Month in March

by Christi Mathis

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- In recognition of Women’s History Month, Southern Illinois University Carbondale will be “Honoring Trailblazing Women in Business and Labor” in March.

Guest speakers, discussions, workshops, displays and special activities will celebrate women and their successes and highlight strategies and steps for progress. The events are all open to the public, and with the exception of the Celebrate Women fundraiser on March 30, everything is free.

“Regarding Susan Sontag,” a movie screening looking at the private life of the philosopher, writer and political activist, will be featured during the kick-off event at 7 p.m. on March 1 in Morris Library’s John C. Guyon Auditorium. The movie, featured on HBO, examines Sontag’s work through her family, relationships and sexuality. It won best documentary honors at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival. The evening will also include an introduction for Women’s History Month.

Women can sometimes feel intimidated in the workplace but Kalya Reed, Wall and Grand Apartments hall director, will discuss how to remain professional, keep a positive attitude and know your purpose in order to succeed during “The Leading Lady: Being a Kickass Woman in the Working World” at 5 p.m. March 2 in Room 140 of Morris Library.

A unique, three-week interactive art installation, “Dreaming Diversity,” and the accompanying “Nap-ins” display will take place in the Morris Library rotunda from March 6 to 31. Organizers hope that through interactive art, people can have honest and open dialogue, express concerns, hopes and dreams regarding diversity, and come together imaginatively.

The month features a series of “ME” Mondays. A four-week self-defense class series kicks things off. The class meets at 5 p.m. each Monday in the Grinnell Hall dance studio. Afterward, there will be discussions at 6 p.m. on March 6, 20 and 27 at The Gathering Place, in the lower level of Grinnell Hall. Topics for the discussions are “Breaking Down Body Image Standards,” “Having Healthy Relationships,” and “Sexual Health.”

A creative writing workshop, taking place at 6 p.m. on March 22 in Morris Library’s Room 139, shows participants how creative writing and journaling can decrease stress, improve wellness and lead to self-discovery.

The “Kween:  Strategies for Blogging/Social Media Activism” presentation at 6 p.m. on March 23 in the Student Center’s Kaskaskia/Missouri Rooms reveals another avenue for self-exploration and activism involving words. Alex Davenport and Mick Brewer, both doctoral communication studies candidates, will lead the conversation regarding the use of social media to raise consciousness and build community and resistance.

A roundtable discussion,” Defending Women in Trump’s America: Strategies for Resistance,” will be at 4 p.m. on March 28 in the Thebes Room at the Student Center. Women from throughout the region will explore new and different ways to communicate and change the conversation with those who implicitly or explicitly seek to oppose the rights of women.

There will also be presentations focusing on the impact of federal employee wellness programs and employee resilience in the federal workplace, creating diversity within the workplace, and other relevant topics.

The annual Celebrate Women Award Ceremony and Fundraiser with Student Fashion Show is set for 5 p.m. on March 30 in Morris Library’s rotunda and John C. Guyon Auditorium. The event includes an award presentation, dinner, fashion show and entertainment and it celebrates women and their contributions while raising funds for scholarships. Tickets are $25 each and available by contacting Martha Ellert at msellert@aol.com.

“Making Our Dreams Come True: Strategies for Change” is the theme of the closing reception for Women’s History Month. The event is from noon to 3 p.m. on March 31 at the John C. Guyon Auditorium in Morris Library. Participants will discuss strategies for bringing about positive change to create a more diverse, inclusive and safe campus, region and world.

Find the complete schedule of events at www.smrc.siu.edu/wrc.For more information, call 618/453-3740 or email Nicole Tabor, graduate assistant coordinator, at WRC@siu.edu.  

Women’s History Month Sponsors include: the Student Multicultural Resource Center and its Women’s Resource Center, Morris Library, University Housing, The Art Education Program, the Department of Cinema and Photography, the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs Inc., the St. Louis Art Museum, and SIU’s Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies.