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UW-Eau Claire celebrates Women's History Month

| Denise Olson

March is Women's History Month, and UW-Eau Claire will host a series of events, speakers and discussions aimed at highlighting the issues, lives and accomplishments of women today and throughout our history.

Dr. Rose-Marie Avin, professor of economics and director of the Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies program, describes the importance of taking time to celebrate in this way, both as a campus and as a society.

"Women’s History Month is not only a celebration of women’s achievements in the face of discrimination and oppression, but also a reminder that the fight continues," Avin said. "This is a time to celebrate the women who are still fighting for social justice, although many have been marginalized in our society. We need to celebrate women such as Alicia Garza, the co-creator of Black Lives Matter, a national organization that focuses on fighting anti-Black state-sanctioned violence."

Avin also points out the background of this month of recognition in Wisconsin specifically.

"The celebration of achievements of women in Wisconsin started in 1980 when Gov. Lee Sherman Dreyfus declared the first week of March to be Women’s History Week in Wisconsin and March 8 to be celebrated statewide as International Women’s Day," she said.

The Dreyfus proclamation, a copy of which is located in the office of the WGSS, reads in part:

“Whereas, women in history is a theme to be celebrated and it is fitting and proper to commemorate women as economic, social, and political partners of our state and nation.”

Following is the schedule of Women's History Month events on campus:

Inform, Engage, Empower: The Women’s Leadership Project
Friday, March 1, noon
Centennial Hall 4705

Mari Bodensteiner and Ami Christensen, lecturers in languages, give an overview of The Women’s Leadership Project, a transnational project developed to foster collaboration and sharing of  knowledge on issues related to women and girls in the Lower Mekong Region. Through online mentoring, a three-day forum event and the development of a community of practice (CoP), this collaborative network cultivated best practices, innovative ideas and professional skills.

Women's History Month Kickoff Celebration
Monday, March 4, 4:30 p.m.
Ojibwe Ballroom, Davies Center

Join Provost Patricia Kleine, the keynote speaker, as she lends her voice to officially opening the celebration of Women's History Month at UW-Eau Claire.

The Forum: Peggy Orenstein
Tuesday, March 5, 7:30 p.m.
Schofield Auditorium

Award-winning journalist Peggy Orenstein presents "Girls & Sex: Navigating a Complicated New Landscape" in which she talks frankly and with humor about the complicated landscape facing young girls today as it relates to their sexuality. She confronts topics like mixed messaging, social media and even the pornography industry and how these elements converge in influencing the current lives of young women. 

Film Screening: 'Scarlet Road'
Tuesday, March 12
Woodland Theater, Davies Center

Scarlet Road follows the extraordinary work of Australian sex worker Rachel Wotton. Impassioned about freedom of sexual expression and the rights of sex workers, she specializes in a long overlooked clientele — people with disabilities.

Faculty Recital: Dr. Molly Gebrian, viola 
Wednesday, March13, 7:30 p.m.
Phillips Recital Hall, Haas Fine Arts Center

Dr. Molly Gebrian, associate professor of music, has distinguished herself as an outstanding performer, teacher and scholar throughout the U.S. and Europe. Her love of contemporary music has led her to collaborate with many composers, often in premieres of works written for her. In this recital, Gebrian will perform a collection of works all composed by women.

Feminism on Tap: Feminism, coffee and conversation
Tuesday, March 19, 7 p.m.
The Cabin, Davies Center
Guest Speaker: Linda Her
Wednesday, March 20, 5-6:30 p.m.
Centennial Hall 2920

Linda Her, the executive director of the Asian American Organizing Project (AAOP) will give a presentation titled "Civic Participation and the Struggle for Social Justice."

Faculty Recital: Various faculty
Listen to Us Deeply: A Celebration of Women & Queer Composers
Thursday, March 21, 7 p.m.
Phillips Recital Hall, Haas Fine Arts Center

Photo caption: UW-Eau Claire students Marinez Smith (left) and Ariyana Dryden pause for a photo during a recent campus event.