The Women’s Studies Program hosted its inaugural mini-conference on Thursday, March 6, 2008. The event was organized to celebrate International Women’s Day (March 8) and Women’s History Month (March). Director of Women’s Studies Dr. K Soysa welcomed students, faculty and staff, and thanked her predecessors for bringing the Women’s Studies Program to this point in its development. Vice President for Academic Affairs Dr. Julie Wollman commended faculty research in the area of Women’s Studies in her opening remarks. Vice President for Student Affairs Dr. Sibyl Brownlee voiced her appreciation of the event, stating that campus-based research conferences were rare in the field of Women’s Studies amongst state schools in Massachusetts.
Several faculty presented their work at the mini-conference: Dr. Lisa Krissoff-Boehm, Dr. Lori Dawson, Dr. K Soysa, Dr. Kristen Waters, Dr. Judy Jeon-Chapman, and Dr. Cathy Wilcox-Titus. In addition, Manoj Jonna, a WSC undergraduate, presented Dr. Bonnie Orcutt’s microfinance project with Nicaraguan women. The event was well attended throughout the day by students, faculty, and staff, including two distinguished guests, President Janelle Ashley and Director of Affirmative Action Edna Spencer.
The Women’s Studies Program is interdisciplinary and its faculty members represent many departments, including Biology, Business Administration, Communication, Health, History, Languages and Literature, Music, Nursing, Philosophy, Physical and Earth Sciences, Psychology, Sociology, Urban Studies and Visual and Performing Arts. The program offers 25-30 classes each semester and students can complete the Women’s Studies Concentration by taking just five classes. Many of these classes also count towards distribution requirements, so students can add a concentration without having to take extra courses.
As pre-registration for Fall 2008 approaches, the Women’s Studies Advisory Board will call on advisors to recruit students to the concentration. Please address your questions about the program to K Soysa at 508-929-8703 firstname.lastname@example.org. The Women’s Forum is a student organization on campus that welcomes new members. If you know of any students who are interested in joining, please have them contact Rita Franzat email@example.com or Faculty Adviser Kristen Waters firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Women’s Studies Advisory Board would like to thank the campus community for their support of this event and the Program in general.
Submitted by Champika “K” Soysa, Associate Professor, Psychology
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