Women’s History Month

Through the eyes of ‘Global Girls’

BOWLING GREEN, O.—BGSU takes “girl culture” international this year for its celebration of Women’s History Month. “Global Girls” is the theme for the month’s events, which include girls and women from around the world. The month culminates March 30 with a research symposium, guest speaker and presentation of awards and scholarships.

The Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies Program will host the research symposium, featuring the work of undergraduate and graduate students, with concurrent sessions from 9 a.m. to noon March 30 in 314, 315 and 316 Bowen-Thompson Student Union. A fund-raising silent auction will be held from 12:30-3 p.m. in 308 Union, where the remainder of the events will take place, including Women’s Equity Action Legacy Award presentations at 1 p.m. for undergraduate and graduate student winners of the research/writing competition.

Keynote speaker Dr. Heather Switzer, assistant professor in the School of Social Transformation at Arizona State University, will discuss “Postfeminist Politics and Girl Effects: Exploring the Limits and Possibilities of Girls Gone Global” at 2 p.m.

Switzer’s research looks at the overlap of girls’, African and critical development studies. She will focus on “the girl” in international development discourse using her research in rural Masai communities to highlight the limits and possibilities of and for the global girl.  

The month’s events begin Monday (March 2) with the Women of Distinction Awards ceremony, honoring outstanding campus women for their mentorship, leadership and contributions to women’s empowerment. It begins at 7 p.m. in 228 Union and is free and open to all.

Recipients may be undergraduate or graduate students, staff members, faculty members, and/or BGSU employees. At the ceremony, they share their advice, inspiration and experience with attendees. After hearing their motivational stories, attendees have an opportunity to meet them, face-to-face, during the reception.

The event is sponsored by the Center for Leadership, Pan-Hellenic Council, Graduate Student Senate and Coca-Cola.

On March 4, international high school teachers visiting BGSU as part of the International Research and Exchange Board Teaching Excellence and Achievement program will share their reflections on education for girls during a lunchtime gathering in the Women’s Center, 107 Hanna Hall. Dr. Christopher Frey, educational foundations, leadership and policy studies, will facilitate the discussion.

Also March 4, from 6-8:30 p.m., the documentary “I Am a Girl” will be screened in the Union Theater followed by a panel discussion. BGSU’s Bincy Abdul Samad, Dinah Tetteh and Shrinkhala Upadhyaya will share their experiences growing up as girls. The film, by Australian director Rebecca Barry, presents contemporary girls from around the world whose lives demonstrate the fact that being born a girl means you are more likely to be subjected to violence, disease, poverty and disadvantage than any other group on Earth. 

“International Girls Take on Northwest Ohio” on March 18, when exchange students from Toledo’s Maumee Valley Country Day School share their perspectives during the Women’s Center’s noontime discussion series, facilitated by JoAnna Murphy, American culture studies.

Other events include the 17th annual “Bring Your Favorite Female Professor/Mentor to Lunch” on March 17 at the Women’s Center (by reservation only); “Phenomenal Women,” from 6-8 p.m. March 18 at the Women’s Center, presented by the Pretty Brown Girl Collegiate Club; “Becoming an Immigrant Community: Implications of Intentional Recognition in Dayton, Ohio,” from 3-4:30 p.m. March 27 at the Wood County District Public Library, 251 N. Main St.; and the Women’s Empowerment Conference from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 28 in 308 Union, sponsored by the National Council of Negro Women.

Except for “Bring Your Favorite Female Professor/Mentor to Lunch,” all events are free and open to the public. See a full listing of events and sponsors.