ASUO Women’s Center provides more than just resources for students
Though the room is crowded with busily working coordinators and assistants answering calls and checking emails, there remains a welcoming atmosphere. By striving to provide a support system for students on campus, volunteers and coordinators at the ASUO Womens Center hope to be more than just a utility for students, but also to provide a community that enhances the University of Oregon student experience.
The Women’s Center’s main mission is to advocate the need for education and working environments for women at the UO, says Director Brandy Teel. To provide that experience, they work toward societal change that reduces oppression and supports personal growth. The Women’s Center also strives to teach empowerment and leadership to students through various events such as sexual violence prevention educational night, women’s empowerment conferences and educational meetings to address issues that arise at the UO.
“I love the environment and working with students,” Teel said. “I love how the Women’s Center provides leadership and support to students. We host a lot of events and a lot of people don’t know that the Women’s Center organizes it, and we want more people to know about our contribution.”
Not only does the Women’s Center offer support groups and programs, it also provides useful resources for students like free printing, free coffee, tampons, pads, condoms and employment opportunities.
“I transferred to the UO two years ago and I wanted to find a space for me that provided comfortable space and I found an opening to the Women’s Center,” volunteer coordinator Ana Areli Rodriguez said. “I was new and as a feminist I found to be that the Women’s Center offers an environment that provides great conversations and it really widen my eyes as far as issues that are happening around the community.” @@name [email protected]@
The Women’s Center hosts a variety of events throughout the year including Take Back the Night on Apr. 24 which is a sexual violence prevention event that focuses on speaking out against sexual violence and offers students the opportunity to hear stories of survivors of sexual violence. Another major event Out/Loud Queer, Women’s and Trans Music Festival on May 17 — one of the largest women’s and queer festivals in the West Coast.
“The Women’s Center is a great place for students, and working for the Women’s Center has been great,” office assistant Meerah Powell said. “I’ve enjoyed working for them and all the events we host are great opportunities for students. We definitely want to have more of an outreach for students.” @@name [email protected]@
In a few short weeks the Women’s Center will be relocated due to the EMU’s renovation to MacCourt and it will continue to provide its resources to students.
“Although we’re moving to a new location will still offer the same resources we have been offering,” Rodriguez said. “Once we settle in MacCourt we want to personalize it and make it welcoming to students.”
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