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WAGE Center name changes to better reflect programming and services

RELEASED: Aug. 26, 2011

Womens & LGBTQ Center

EAU CLAIRE — The name of the Women's and Gender Equity Center (known as the WAGE Center) at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire has been changed to better reflect the inclusion of programming and services to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer communities. The center's name now is the Women's and LGBTQ Resource Center.

"After researching various women's and LGBTQ resource centers at college campuses across the nation, it became evident that a name change was necessary in order to make our center's services and mission more explicit," said Abby Vercauteren, women's issues program coordinator for the center. "It is extremely important for incoming freshman and upperclassmen alike to be able to easily identify where to seek help if experiencing discrimination; our center's name change makes this possible."

According to Christopher Jorgenson, LGBTQ program coordinator, the transition to "Women's and LGBTQ Resource Center" is a testament to the "extensive achievements" made by the WAGE office since its creation in 2005.

"This name change seeks to capitalize on the momentum created by consistent and relevant programming and reflects the organizational flexibility that is necessary in order to continue the work that is crucial to both women and the LGBTQ campus communities," said Jorgenson.

"By thrusting the letters 'LGBTQ' into the spotlight, this name change supports UW-Eau Claire's institutional commitment to promote equity, diversity and inclusivity."

The Women's and LGBTQ Resource Center advocates for the welfare of women as well as the LGBTQ community. The staff provides resources, information and programming — such as the presentation of "The Vagina Monologues," "Out With It!" (National Coming Out Day), "Break the Silence!" (National Day of Silence) and the Clothesline Project to prevent sexual assault — in coordination with academic departments, advisory committees and other organizations that address challenges faced by women and the LGBTQ campus community.

Jacqueline Bonneville, assistant dean of students, supervises the Women's and LGBTQ Resource Center and applauds the center's work in raising awareness and calling attention to issues through programming, resource fairs and classroom presentations.

"I am proud of the work they do and support their progressive approach to best meet the needs of our UW-Eau Claire community," Bonneville said.

For more information about the Women's and LGBTQ Resource Center, contact Christopher Jorgenson, LGBTQ program coordinator at 715-836-2693 or jorgencj@uwec.edu, or Abby Vercauteren, women's issues coordinator, at vercaual@uwec.edu.

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RD/DW

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