American Association of University Women (AAUW)
The AAUW is a multi-faceted organization focused on empowering women on college campuses. AAUW (known as the Association of Collegiate Alumnae until 1921) is a national organization that was founded by Marion Talbot and Ellen Richard in 1882. Talbot and Richards’ goal was to advocate for women in college environments, and to create a cohesive league of women to sponsor this particular goal. Talbot, Richards, and other members began by organizing the Association into branches across the nation.
By 1885 the Association released its first research report, which concluded that the higher education did not in fact have harmful effects on female health—a well-believed myth at the time. Following the report, the group granted the first of many fellowships to member Ida Street. These fellowships continue to be essential to the work of AAUW. Today, the AAUW continues its work in research, fellowships, and advocacy on college campuses nationwide.
At Ohio University, the AAUW offers a scholarship for women who were high school students in Athens County. The organization also provides money for girls in middle school to attend the Be WISE Camp, which focuses on math and science education. Another facet of AAUW is the League of Women Voters, which promotes voting for women.
To get involved with the AAUW, check out the TechSavvy event powered by AAUW, taking place May 14 at Ohio University. You can also email the Athens branch president Melanie Schori at email@example.com for more information.
Generation Action (formerly Vox) is a campus organization that has partnered with Planned Parenthood to promote safe sex and reproductive health. Generation Action at Ohio University is part of a nationwide effort by schools to advocate for the services provided by Planned Parenthood. The OU branch began in 2010 in response to student need, and controversy around issues such as abortion.
Generation Action has promoted its goals in Athens through free condom distribution, the “pink-out” for Planned Parenthood, and the “Safe and Sexy” campaign. This organization also raises awareness about STD testing, pregnancy tests, and more.
To get involved in Generation Action, email the organization at firstname.lastname@example.org.
BEEP Lab (Biopsychosocial Examination of Eating Patterns Lab)
BEEP is an on-campus lab in the psychology department that conducts research on eating disorders and provides outreach services concerned with these disorders. BEEP Lab is currently managed by assistant professor Dr. Sarah Racine, who in 2015 developed an apprenticeship for undergraduate students to conduct research on eating disorders. The lab investigates genetic predisposition, mental health, and environment for the causes of certain eating patterns and diseases. The mission is to objectively discover information on these disorders and find treatment options. Although eating disorders are not gendered, a 2011 statistic on www.nationaleatingdisorders.org says that 20 million women and 10 million men were affected in the United States at that time; thus why this organization is incredibly significant for the health of women at Ohio University.
To join BEEP Lab and gain psychological research skills you can fill out an application here. (Please keep in mind that this position requires on average nine hours of work a week for a minimum of two semesters. Applicants must also hold a 3.3. GPA or higher.)
To participate in BEEP Lab you can email the lab at email@example.com or call 740-593-1060.
The Women’s Center at Ohio University was founded in 2007 to meet the needs of female-identifying students. The Center strives to educate and advocate for a variety of topics including gender identity, anti-rape/domestic abuse, education, and sexual harassment.
To get involved with the Women’s Center you can attend “Brown Bag Lunches” every Thursday from 12:00–1:00 p,m. in the Center’s room on the fourth floor of Baker Student Center (room 403). This particular program encourages free discussion about subjects concerning women. You can also attend the International Women’s Coffee Hour at the Center on March 23 and April 13.
In 1979, the first program for gay counseling at OU emerged under the name “Helping Someone Gay.” The movement gained even more support the following year when the university included “sexual orientation” to its non-discrimination policy. It took until 1998 for the LGBT Center to become a part-time operation connected to Ohio University’s Division of Student Affairs initiative to improve diversity. In 2003 the LGBT Center officially became a full-time operational unit. Since then the Center has been constantly evolving to meet the needs of students.
Keeping in touch with its progressive past, the LGBT Center strives to expand diversity on campus. A large component of the Center’s mission is to educate individuals about the LGBT movement and to provide stellar education for LGBT students at Ohio. The LGBT Center works with the Women’s Center to advocate for the rights of underrepresented students. Both centers take an intersectional approach to feminism where the movement is seen as an opportunity to discuss the oppression of all minority groups and how they interrelate to one another.
FEM (Feminist Equality Movement)
Feminist Equality Movement (FEM) began at Ohio University in 2012; however, it did not become completely active until 2014, once it gained more members. Between 2012 and 2014 FEM nearly doubled in size, increasing the awareness of FEM’s mission, and bringing more socially conscious events to campus.
FEM’s primary mission is to defeat sexism on college campuses. Intersectionality is central to this goal as FEM strives to tackle feminist issues from multiple perspectives. Like the LGBT and Women’s Center, FEM has adopted this intersectional view of feminism where gender, race, sexuality, and identity are all taken into account when discussing the topic. FEM also works toward removing the stigma around the word “feminism,” which in turn will make feminism a more inclusive, accessible movement.
To get involved with FEM email firstname.lastname@example.org or come to meetings in the Women’s Center at 8:00 p.m. on Mondays.
FEM meeting in the Women’s Center