Women’s History Month features variety of events

Womens History Month features variety of events

March officially kicks off Women’s History Month with many forum events planned by different groups on campus.

“We have a lot going on during the month that focuses on the stories and experiences of women,” Jennifer Nostrala, professor of theatre and director of the women’s studies program, said. “Many of the events have been organized by students which I think is very important.”

The different groups and departments on campus sponsoring the events include women’s studies, Women’s Resource Center, Panhellenic Council, Religious Life Community, Sexual Assault Response Advocates, Lilly Initiative, Student Development, Academic Affairs and Simpson Forum.

The events began March 3 when Pastor Arnette Pint, chaplain from the Mitchellville Correctional Institute, gave a talk about her experience. Women in Mitchellville gather Thursday evenings for worship and fellowship with the reverend.

On March 4, Dr. Joe Walt will give the Women in Simpson’s History Lecture. This event will began with a dinner in the Matthew Simpson Room and followed with the lecture. Sophomore Miranda Knake is one of the students who helped out with this event.

“I’m very excited about Dr. Walt’s speech because it will be about Simpson and specifically about women’s history at Simpson,” Knake said. “Women’s History Month is important because we are able to discuss issues that are important and it’s a great way to celebrate women.”

Today, the Simpson Forum Gabfest “Defining Feminism” will take place in the Pioneer Conference Room. The discussion will focus on what it means to be a feminist in 2008. The panel will consist of two Simpson College faculty members, two students and two members of the community. This forum will begin at 12:45 p.m. in pioneer room in McNeill Hall.

Later in the evening today, the documentary “Searching for Angela Shelton” will be shown in Jordan Lecture Hall at 7 p.m. This documentary, created by filmmaker and activist Angela Shelton, is a journey across America and into the lives of ordinary women who share the name Angela Shelton. Shelton found that 70 percent were victims of sexual assault.

On March 19, the Women in America Lecture will feature Angela Shelton. This event will be in Pote Theatre at 7 p.m.

During the week of March 24-28, the Clothesline Project will begin. Started in Cape Cod, Mass., in 1990, The Clothesline Project aims to address the issue of violence against women. It’s a way for women to express the violence they’ve experienced through art on a T-shirt. The shirts will then hang on clotheslines around campus as a testimony for those who’ve dealt with this violence.

On March 24, the movie “Iron Jawed Angels” will be shown in the Women’s Resource center at 7 p.m. “Iron Jawed Angels “recounts a time in history with the struggle for suffrage. The movie focuses on Alice Paul (Hilary Swank, “Million Dollar Baby”) and Lucy Burns (Frances O’Connor, “A.I.”) and how these activists broke from mainstream women’s rights to create a radical wing.

On March 27, “Navigating the Labyrinth: Women and Leadership” will occur in the Matthew Simpson Room from 3:30-5:30 p.m. The program will consist of a panel, moderated by Nancy Byrd, and will bring together key women leaders from Central Iowa.

The weekend of March 28-29, “The Vagina Monologues” will be in Camp Lounge at 7:30 p.m. Written by Eve Ensler’s, “The Vagina Monologues” are a part of Simpson College “V-Day.” The money raised from ticket sales will go to the Warren County’s Women’s Shelter.

The string of events for Women’s History Month doesn’t end in March. “Searching for Angela Shelton “and the Take Back the Night Rally will occur at Jordan Lecture Hall at 6:30 p.m.

“Women’s history is important because it’s a way to be educate women on issues that are really important and that shouldn’t be overlooked,” sophomore Cassie Fangman said.