SMU Women’s Symposium celebrates 50 years, looks to the future Wednesday, March 4, 2015

SMU Women’s Center

SMU Women’s Symposium celebrates 50 years, looks to the future Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Lilly Ledbetter

Equal-pay activist Lilly Ledbetter will give the keynote speech at SMU’s 50th annual Women’s Symposium Wednesday, March 4, 2015.

The SMU Women’s Symposium will examine women’s progress through the last 50 years as part of its own golden anniversary celebration on Wednesday, March 4, 2015,

More than 600 attendees are expected to gather at the Symposium, created in 1966 as part of the University’s commemoration of its 50th anniversary. Now the longest running event of its kind, the student-led symposium has challenged, changed and broadened women’s perspectives on campus and in the community.

Lilly Ledbetter, namesake of the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act of 2009 and an advocate for gender wage equality, will present at noon a keynote address about her 10-year battle for pay equality at Goodyear Tire and Rubber.

“Lilly Ledbetter represents women using their voices to create change,” says Karen Click, director of SMU’s Women and LBGT Center. “We’ve been inspired by that for 50 years and hope that we continue, as women, to examine our voices and use them.”

Past speakers have included Hillary Clinton, Maya Angelou, Margaret Mead, Marlee Matlin, Patricia Ireland and Eleanor Clift.

Women's Symposium 2015“For me, Women’s Symposium was a unique opportunity for women to come together to discuss issues in a supportive environment,” says Meg Wuebbels Leal, a Phoenix attorney and government relations specialist who was involved with SMU Women’s Symposium as a student in the late 1980s. “It serves as a great example to young college-age women of how to network and support one another.”

The 2015 symposium will feature a community resource fair, book signing and community awards reception and dinner where Merriott Terry, executive director of IGNITE Texas, will receive the Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award.

The Profiles in Leadership Award will be presented to Roberta Berger, licensed professional counselor and psychologist; Ashley Elsey, founder and owner of Minerva Consulting; Pam Gerbber, executive director, Entrepreneurs for North Texas; Liz Cedillo-Pereira, attorney and founding partner of Cedillo-Pereira and Associates; and Nellie Tafalla, community activist.

The symposium is open to the public and will take place from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. at SMU’s Hughes-Trigg Student Center.

Written by Nancy George

> Visit the SMU Women’s Symposium online: smu.edu/womsym
> Find a complete schedule at the SMU News website

March 2, 2015|Calendar Highlights, News, Year of the Student|

Dr. Laura Berman to speak at 2010 Women’s Symposium

Dr. Laura BermanTherapist, sex educator, columnist, radio host and women’s health leader Dr. Laura Berman will deliver the Emmie V. Baine Lecture during SMU’s 45th Annual Women’s Symposium.

This year’s event, “Answers Empower: You Can Ask the Questions,” is scheduled for March 3, 2010, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. Dr. Berman will speak during lunch at the Symposium, which is the oldest continuously running program of its kind in the country and attracts more than 400 community leaders, high school students and college students, faculty and staff members each year.

Berman has given advice about sex and relationships on “The Today Show” and CNN, as well as in publications including The New York Times, USA Today, Glamour, Elle and Ladies’ Home Journal. She also writes an online column, “In the Bedroom with Dr. Laura Berman,” and starred in Showtime’s hit reality series “Sexual Healing,” which followed real-life couples through a week in therapy with her. Her latest book, The Book of Love: Every Couple’s Guide to Emotional and Sexual Intimacy, was released by DK Publishing in January 2010.

Dr. Berman is familiar to millions through her nightly Sirius XM Radio program, “Better in Bed,” and her regular appearances on “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” That familiarity makes her an ideal individual to lead a conversation on women’s health and wellness, says Karen Click, SMU Women’s Center director and Women’s Symposium coordinator. “She is an expert in women’s health and speaks with an inspiring confidence about issues affecting women.”

Symposium topics range from medical myths to the state of the U.S. health insurance system, with discussions on body image, healthy nutrition and more.

Each year, Women’s Symposium participants provide feedback on topics for the following year’s event. Throughout 2009, the Symposium Advisory Board and Student Planning CORE Committee “kept returning to the theme of women’s health,” Click says. “As the national conversation on health and healthcare has been so prominent, we knew that we had hit upon a good topic.”

Through researching the subject and asking women about their health interests, “we found that more often than not they had questions instead of answers,” she adds – hence the 2010 Symposium title.

“We hope that the speakers, workshops and resources will provide answers to the myriad of questions that women have about their health,” Click says.

Symposium attendance is free for SMU faculty, staff and students; the registration deadline is Feb. 24. Register online or contact Wendy Smith, 214-768-4792.

Learn more at the SMU Women’s Symposium website
Visit Dr. Berman’s homepage at www.drlauraberman.com

February 16, 2010|Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|
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