SMU celebrates MLK with Dream Week 2015 Jan. 17-22

Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives

SMU celebrates MLK with Dream Week 2015 Jan. 17-22

Martin Luther King Jr.

SMU celebrates the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. during Dream Week 2015.

SMU celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during Dream Week 2015, Jan. 17-22.

Sponsored by SMU’s Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, the annual observance features a variety of activities, including opportunities for community service and a commemorative walk.

The schedule of events:

Saturday, Jan. 17:

  • Dallas Martin Luther King Jr. Day Parade, 10 a.m., starting at Dallas City Hall. SMU administrators, faculty and students will participate in the City of Dallas’ parade – including SMU President R. Gerald Turner and alumnus Charles Cox, who as a student introduced King when he spoke at the University on March 17, 1966. (Listen to King’s speech at SMU or read the transcriptaudio) Alumni of SMU’s annual spring break Civil Rights pilgrimage, SMU Black Alumni members, SMU Multicultural Student Affairs representatives and SMU student athletes and coaches also will march in the parade. Find more information at MLKCelebrationDallas.org.

Sunday, Jan. 18:

  • SMU Student Coalition for Equity Meeting, 2 p.m., 243 Umphrey Lee Center. The Student Coalition for Equity is a grassroots social justice movement run by and for students. The group addresses issues of social injustice and seeks to create change from the bottom up.

Monday, Jan. 19:

  • MLK Day of Service, 8 a.m.-1 p.m., volunteer meet-up in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center at assigned times. SMU students, faculty and staff will join others across the country in a national day of service. Opportunities include preparing the Vickery Meadows Learning Center for the spring semester, building ramps at homes of those with physical disabilities and helping with landscaping at local nonprofit centers. Breakfast, lunch and transportation provided. Cosponsored by SMU’s Community Engagement and Leadership Center. Find more information at smu.edu/volunteer.
  • Free screening of “Selma” for SMU students, 7 p.m., Angelika Film Center, Mockingbird Station. SMU students can catch a free showing of this 2014 release, just nominated for a Best Picture Oscar, which explores 1965 Alabama as a battleground in the fight for suffrage for African-Americans. The screening will be followed by free pizza and a discussion with experts on the civil rights movement. Sponsored by Morrison-McGinnis Commons; register at tiny.cc/SelmaMoMac.

Tuesday, Jan. 20:

  • SMU Unity Walk, 12:30-1:30 p.m., starting at Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons. President R. Gerald Turner and student leaders lead this annual demonstration of the University’s support for MLK’s work. All members of the SMU community are invited to join the walk from the flagpole on Bishop Boulevard to Perkins Chapel.

Wednesday, Jan. 21:

  • Real Talk: Conversations Around Diversity, noon, Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom West. With a January topic of “Is Your Voice Being Heard? Social media activism: How effective is it?,” this monthly discussion is open to students and other members of the SMU community.
  • Opening reception for Helen Suzman: Fighter for Human Rights, 4-6 p.m., Bob Hope Lobby, Owen Arts Center. This panel exhibition uses letters, speeches, political cartoons and news articles to showcase the career of the South African anti-apartheid and human rights activist. The exhibit runs in the Bob Hope Lobby, Owen Arts Center, through Feb. 20, 2015. Cosponsored by the SMU Arts + Urbanism Initiative and Embrey Human Rights Program. Find more information at the Meadows School of the Arts News and Events homepage.

Thursday, Jan. 22:

  • Film screening, “Mountains That Take Wings: A Conversation with Angela Davis and Yuri Kochiyama”, 6:30 p.m., Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom West. Based on exchanges in 1996 and 2008 between professor and writer Angela Davis and grassroots organizer and Nobel Peace Prize nominee Yuri Kochiyama, the film showcases the scope and depth of their knowledge on topics ranging from Jim Crow laws and Japanese American internment camps, to Civil Rights, anti-war, women’s and gay liberation movements, to today’s campaigns for political prisoners and prison reform. Sponsored by SMU’s Women and LGBT Center.

For more information, contact SMU’s Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, 214-768-4580.

January 15, 2015|Calendar Highlights, News|

‘Women Are Superheroes’ in SMU’s 2014 Symposium

SMU Womens' Symposium 2014 - 'Women Are Superheroes' graphicThe SMU Women’s Symposium celebrates its 49th anniversary with a focus on using your power to change the world for the better.

U.S. Air Force veteran Kimberly Olson, president and CEO of Grace After Fire, is the special guest for the 2014 Symposium, “Women Are Superheroes.” Olson will deliver the Emmie V. Baine Lecture during lunch on Wednesday, March 5, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom.

This year’s theme has shaped Symposium programming in both literal and figurative ways, says Karen Click, director of the SMU Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives. “Imaginary superheroes may be heroes of strength, or they may be sexualized partners – but a real-world interpretation is of women who have changed our world, have been great mentors and have amazing powers for good.”

Keynote speaker Olson embodies the bridge between these ideals, Click adds. “She was a literal superhero as a career Air Force pilot who flew into combat and used her strength and skills, plus some incredible technology, to defend our nation. And she’s a figurative one as well, as the leader of an organization whose purpose is to support other women veterans.”

Student organizers are excited about both the theme and their guest, Click says. “Superheroes have been an important part of their collective imagination, and they seem thrilled to have one in their midst,” she says. “Military life seems pretty distant to most of our students as well, and they’re looking forward to the opportunity to learn more about a woman who lived that experience.”

> Find a complete list of 2014 SMU Women’s Symposium events

A variety of Symposium interest sessions will address topics ranging from comic-book depictions of women superheroes, to “Wonder Women” of the workplace, to the pressures of living up to the “Supermom” ideal.

The Symposium is the oldest continuously running program of its kind in the country and attracts hundreds of community leaders, high school students and college students, faculty and staff members each year. Programming is designed by the Symposium Advisory Board and Student Planning CORE Committee.

> More about the Symposium Student Planning CORE Committee

The Symposium will also recognize the winners of its 2014 Profiles in Leadership Awards and Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award. The recipients are:

Profiles in Leadership Awards

  • De’ Edra S. Williams, engagement director of Paranet Solutions
  • Ethene Jones, founder of the Humanitarian World Foundation
  • Monica Urbaniak, director of prevention and outreach and bilingual therapist at the Dallas Area Rape Crisis Center
  • Mavis Knight, Education advocate and member of the Texas State Board of Education
  • Cecelia Guthrie Boone, philanthropist and chair of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America

Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award

  • Linda Hall, chair of the Board of Directors of Wisdom’s Hope and advocate for the homeless

For more information, contact the Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives, 214-768-4792.

> Learn more and register online at the SMU Women’s Symposium website

January 27, 2014|Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|

2013 SMU Women’s Symposium minds the age gap March 6

SMU Women's Symposium 'Mind the Age Gap' logoFor its 48th anniversary, the SMU Women’s Symposium is using a new format to explore age-old questions about the differences and common ground among generations.

Associate Professor of Management and Organizations Ellen Jackofsky and senior art history major Bekah Boyer will participate in a moderated discussion on this year’s theme, “Mind the Age Gap.” The Emmie V. Baine Lecture event will take place during lunch on Wednesday, March 6, 2013, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom.

This year’s event promises to be “a very different kind of symposium,” says Karen Click, director of the SMU Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives. “I visit many different women’s organizations in Dallas, and most of their membership is over 60. They want my help in reaching out to younger women.”

But those efforts are hindered by “a feeling of incapability” shared across generations, Click says. “Younger women are worried about taking on the responsibility of keeping up the push for women’s rights. Older women are worried that their experience no longer matters. When women should be uniting to tackle issues, we’re stuck reinventing the wheel.”

This year’s event will focus on how those gaps affect the community, Click adds. “We see this specifically as an issue impacting Dallas, so we decided not to seek national speakers.”

> Find a complete list of 2013 SMU Women’s Symposium events

“We believe that each generation of women has something different to contribute,” says senior political science and management major Pooja Patel, co-chair of the Symposium’s CORE student planning committee. “By trying to minimize the ‘gap’ or disconnect between them, women’s groups in Dallas will be stronger and more effective.”

A variety of Symposium interest sessions will address topics ranging from the generationally shifting barriers to reproductive rights to how age affects women’s perceptions of appropriate (and inappropriate) fashion choices.

The Symposium is the oldest continuously running program of its kind in the country and attracts hundreds of community leaders, high school students and college students, faculty and staff members each year. And for some participants, including CORE co-chair Kimberly Elmazi, it’s a family legacy.

“All three of my elder sisters participated in CORE during their time at SMU,” says Elmazi, a junior political science and international studies major. “Eight years after my third eldest sister graduated from SMU, I joined the committee as a first-year. Now I’m a co-chair.”

More about the Symposium Student Planning CORE Committee

Elmazi is especially looking forward to the interest session “The Incredibles: Can You Have It All? Gender Roles and Reproductive Rights” because one of her sisters will be a speaker. “It’s funny how things have come full circle,” she says.

The Symposium will also recognize the winners of its 2013 Profiles in Leadership Awards and Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award. The recipients are:

Profiles in Leadership Awards

Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award

For more information, contact the Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives, 214-768-4792.

Kelsey Reynolds (’14) contributed to this article.

Learn more at the SMU Women’s Symposium website

March 1, 2013|Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|

SMU’s Dream Week 2013 celebrates MLK Jan. 21-25

Martin Luther King Jr.

SMU celebrates the life and legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. during Dream Week 2013.

SMU celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during Dream Week 2013, Jan. 21-25.

Sponsored by SMU’s Office of Multicultural Student Affairs, the annual observance features a variety of activities, including opportunities for community service and a commemorative walk.

The schedule of events:

Monday, Jan. 21:

  • Day of Service, 7:30 a.m.-noon. Students will have opportunities to volunteer at Readers 2 Leaders, We Over Me Farm and the Wesley-Rankin Community Center. Co-sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs and Community Engagement and Leadership.

Tuesday, Jan. 22:

  • Real Talk: Conversations Around Diversity, “Dream or Nightmare: How far have we come since the MLK Speech,” noon, Hughes-Trigg Student Center Portico B-C-D.

Wednesday, Jan. 23:

  • Unity Walk featuring remarks from SMU President R. Gerald Turner, noon. Meet at the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Commons.
  • Dream Week Keynote AddressCheryl Brown Henderson, “Brown v. Board of Education: The Legacy Continues,” 6 p.m., Hughes-Trigg Student Center Theater. Cheryl Brown Henderson, one of the three daughters of the late Rev. Oliver L. Brown, who along with 12 other parents led by the NAACP, filed a lawsuit against the local board of education on behalf of their children in the historic school integration case Oliver L. Brown et. al. vs. the Board of Education of Topeka. The 1954 Supreme Court decision stated that “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal.”

Thursday, Jan. 24:

  • Film ScreeningBrother Outsider: The Life of Bayard Rustin, 7 p.m., Hughes-Trigg Student Center Forum. Sponsored by SMU’s Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives.
  • Friday, Jan. 25 – Unity Luncheon, 11:30 a.m.-1 p.m., Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballrooms. Featured speaker for the luncheon will be Dedman College Dean William Tsutsui, who will speak on “Chasing the Asian American Dream.” Co-sponsored by the SMU Asian Council, Association of Black Students, and College of Hispanic American Students.


January 18, 2013|Calendar Highlights, News|

Julie Powell to give keynote at 2011 SMU Women’s Symposium March 2

Julie PowellAuthor and food enthusiast Julie Powell, known to millions as one half of “Julie & Julia,” will deliver the Emmie V. Baine Lecture during SMU’s 46th Annual Women’s Symposium. This year’s event is scheduled for March 2, 2011, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom.

Powell will speak during lunch at the Symposium, which is the oldest continuously running program of its kind in the country and attracts hundreds of community leaders, high school students and college students, faculty and staff members each year.

The topic, “Happiness Is…,” was the result of brainstorming by the Symposium advisory board, CORE student planning committee and staff members, says Karen Click, director of the SMU Women’s Center for Gender and Pride Initiatives.

“We found we’re often comparing notes with each other about that secret to happiness,” she says. “Women are constantly trying to understand this thing. There are so many false paths to happiness, so much money spent in pursuit of it, so many dynamics involved in seeking and finding it. We thought it was a great broad theme, and the entire community can relate to it.”

Finding the ideal keynote speaker was the next challenge. “Most people don’t get their degrees in happiness or work for the Department of Happiness,” Click says. Powell’s biography and body of work stood out in that regard, she says.

In 2002 Powell, an Austin native, worked in the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation’s call center, answering questions from victims of the Sept. 11 attacks and complaints from the public about the LMDC’s plans for rebuilding on the World Trade Center site. In search of a sense of direction in her life, she decided to cook every recipe in the landmark 1961 book Mastering the Art of French Cooking, cowritten by Julia Child, and blog about her experiences. Those writings, collectively known as The Julie/Julia Project, led to Powell’s first book, Julie and Julia: My Year of Cooking Dangerously, published by Little, Brown in 2005. The book in turn helped inspire the major motion picture “Julie & Julia” starring Amy Adams and Meryl Streep, released by Columbia Pictures in 2009.

But wealth and fame brought no contentment. Powell almost lost her marriage and went through a series of financial disasters that ate into her new fortune. “Basically, she discovered she wasn’t happy at all,” Click says. “She became a butcher’s apprentice to rediscover her spark and motivation, and she wrote her second book about that experience.” Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession was published in 2009.

The Symposium will present a variety of interest sessions on the subject of finding happiness, as well as a show by the Dallas improvisational comedy group Heroine Addiction.

In addition, the Symposium will recognize the winners of its 2011 Profiles in Leadership Awards and Gail Reese Ward Excellence in Mentoring Award. The recipients are:

Profiles in Leadership Awards
Lois Finkelman, public policy consultant
Candace O’Keefe Mathis, CEO, Foundation for Women’s Resources
Peggy Sewell, philanthropist and director, Sewell Automotive Companies
Karen Shuford ’70, charitable trust consultant, Bank of America Private Client Group
Kathleen Wu, partner, Andrews Kurth LLP

Gail Reese Excellence in Mentoring Award
Phyllis Bernstein, philanthropist

Symposium attendance is discounted for SMU faculty and staff, and students can attend free. The online registration deadline is Wednesday, Feb. 23. Register through the Women’s Symposium website or contact Wendy Smith, 214-768-4792.

(Photo of Julie Powell ©Kelly Campbell)

> Learn more at the SMU Women’s Symposium website
> Visit Julie Powell’s website at juliepowellbooks.com

February 22, 2011|Calendar Highlights, News, Save the Date|
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