SAU celebrates Women’s History Month

Women’s history is being honored this month at St. Ambrose. The celebration is sponsored by the women’s studies department and several of the departments around campus are participating in events throughout the month.
While women’s history is vast in what is out there to learn about, it seems to be a lesser-known area among people. There are reasons historically that make it hard for students and the world to be aware of women’s history.
“A lot of times history classes just leave out women or ignore women’s contributions and I think you are only getting half of the story if you don’t hear about women have done,” Katy Strzepek, director of women’s studies, said.
Bea Jacobson, a professor of women’s studies and English, agrees with Strzepek on the issues concerning women’s history.
“Women’s history had not been emphasized enough,” Jacobson said. “People don’t always think of women as a big historical importance and that’s largely because history traditionally in the past was always written by men.”
Signifying many historical importances for women, the celebration of Women’s History Month honors the facets of women and the rich history embedded in them. It honors the rich history and accomplishments women have achieved over the years.
Throughout March the women’s studies department  offered many events associated with the honoring of women and their history. Over the weeks students have had the opportunity to learn about women. From movies like the documentary “Rape Is” to lectures such as Barbara Gottschalk, the Woodrow Wilson speaker, many different events allowed students to gain knowledge about women and what they have had to go through.
International Women’s Day is one of the big events that celebrates women on a global level and SAU honored the day in various ways. Taking part in trying to better women, the events allowed participants to get involved with changing the ways women are treated and looked at.
“International Women’s Day honors the work that women do in the world and it’s also become an international day of activism for women,” Strzepek said.
Along with the international celebration, students are able to participate in another way. An essay contest is one of the main activities that ties in the theme of Women’s History Month, “Our History is Our Strength.” Getting the chance to honor women of the past through explaining their contributions and how it has affected the student and the world is the purpose of the essay, which may be submitted through March 31st.
Not only students have the opportunity to actively take part in the history of women. Several departments are also sponsoring events around campus including the essay contest. Along with the women’s studies department is the English department and Intercultural Life.
The events for Women’s History Month help students learn and engage themselves about the historical impacts women have made over the years.
As Women’s History Month continues only throughout March, the celebration of women continues throughout campus yearly. Several activities to raise awareness about women are featured each year on campus by the women’s studies department.
“We try to have a brown bag lunch every month, with a program that has to do with women’s history or women’s issues,” Strzepek said. “We also try to purchase books and materials for the women’s studies resource center that relates to women’s history.”
The Women’s History Month celebration sends an empowering message for students and gives them an opportunity to learn about what women have contributed to society.

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