Event Recap: Feminist Discussions: Stanford’s Trans History

On Wednesday November 7th from 5:30-7pm the second Feminist Discussion Night of the year took place in the WCC, this time focusing on Stanford’s transgender history. The event opened with a presentation from Phoebe Peter Oathout about the history and then segwayed into an open discussion about how this history fit into today’s discourse, especially the recent Trump Administration’s announcement.

Here are a few interesting things that came up:

  • Stanford’s Gender Dysphoria Program, founded in the 1960s, helped set many of the legal rules that are still in place today for transgender medical care.
  • Early transgender medical care focused on the “wrong body narrative” as an explanation for the phenomena.
  • Many students on campus, especially non-binary, feel erased by this history.
  • Many of the US’ best transgender thinkers and artists have some association with Stanford.

Attached below are the event’s flyer and a photo taken from the event of Oathout speaking. Also, here is a link to a Stanford Daily article discussing the event.

Learn more about our work & upcoming events at wcc.stanford.edu


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Reflections after Feminist Discussions: The Ford-Kavanaugh Hearings

43006405_2186768901342604_2458321675435900928_o (1)On October 2, 2018 we hosted a discussion event open to all students on campus who wanted to connect with others about the Ford and Kavanaugh hearings in Washington DC. We felt this event was necessary on a campus where people sometimes feel isolated from national issues. The result, a WCC packed with undergrad and grad students, affirmed our prediction. Our online RSVP had 50 sign-ups, but our estimate once the event was over was closer to 60. Luckily, we over-ordered food since we predicted this might happen.

Because the group was so large, we decided to separate the room into three different circles, facilitated individually by Dejah, Marta, and Phoebe. Before the separation, a representative from the Confidential Resources Team (CST) led us in a grounding ceremony and introduction. In groups, students had notecards to write anonymous reactions that would then be read by the facilitator. We also encouraged students to share openly their reactions. The room was a mix of emotions: tears, laughter, silence–all happening at once.

At the end of the event, WCC staff mentioned we were writing letters of support to Dr. Ford, and a graduate student visiting announced a online letter to sign in support of her. Finally, the CST representative once again led us in a grounding ceremony before we left.

The event was as much of a success as any can be when in reaction to difficult news. Overall, we were grateful the WCC could be used in this way since we ourselves were/are hurting.

Femtastic Friday: June 1, 2018

Stanford affiliates: Sign up for our mailing list to receive the full Femtastic Friday email each week for information on upcoming events, updates from around campus, and other important WCC-related news!

Happy Friday from the WCC!

We hope that Week 9 has treated you well and that you all get a chance to enjoy the sun this weekend before the finals grind begins. Please make sure to take care of yourself as we move closer to finals week, and as always, feel welcome to drop by the WCC to hydrate and study!
Take a study break by listening to the NEW episode of Feminist Voices!
Finally, here’s your friendly reminder that the California primary election is next Tuesday, June 5. Remember to vote if you haven’t already!!!
[Happy Pride Month! Image shows the WCC’S new “Of Course I’m a Feminist” sticker! The background is a rainbow, with bold white letters on top. Sticker reads: “Of course I’m a feminist Stanford Women’s Community Center wcc.stanford.edu“]

Interesting News and Other Reads

Last week, Irish voters went to the polls for a historic vote to decide whether the 8th Amendment of the country’s constitution—which previously made abortion illegal in almost all cases—should be repealed. In what was described by the Times as a “surprising landslide,” Ireland voted to end their abortion ban.

This past Tuesday, we were thrilled to host Tarana Burke, the founder of the Me Too movement, in conversation with Alisa Bierria at Cubberley Auditorium. She spoke about her work with black and brown girls from marginalized communities, her appreciation of the allyship of the Twitter #metoo movement, and the imperative for us to find joy in our daily lives. To commemorate her presence on campus this past week, here is a New York Times profile on her work.

Here is a profile of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, published in the New Yorker this week. She is a Nigerian novelist who has published bestselling novels Americanah and the essays We Should All Be Feminists, and a recipient of the MacArthur Genius Grant in 2008.



Stanford Women in Politics wins the 2018 SAL Campus Impact Award for Inspiring Innovation


Members of Stanford Women in Politics, along with Marta Hanson of the Women’s Community Center (far left) and Ankita Rakhe of Student Activities and Leadership (far right), on May 24, 2018.

Women’s Community Center Assistant Dean & Associate Director Marta Hanson shared the following remarks when presenting the 2018 SAL Campus Impact Award for Inspiring Innovation to Stanford Women in Politics on May 24, 2018.

My name is Marta Hanson, and I’m the Assistant Dean & Associate Director of the Women’s Community Center. This year, I was thrilled to nominate Stanford Women in Politics for the SAL Campus Impact Award for Inspiring Innovation.

Stanford Women in Politics, or SWIP, exists to engage, educate, and empower Stanford women interested in politics, in a community that supports, challenges, and inspires them in college and beyond.

Though SWIP is a relatively young organization – less than two years old, officially – the group has already made a tremendous impact on this campus. I remember watching them bring balloons and decorations into the WCC to co-host a watch party on Election Night 2016 – and even though the results of that night were not what they had hoped, ever since that day, SWIP has remained even more committed to their mission, and they have modeled what targeted, engaged advocacy can look like on campus.

Since 2016, SWIP has tripled both their membership and operating budget. They regularly provide tangible opportunities for members of the Stanford community to engage with women in politics, hosting speakers like Congresswoman Anna Eshoo, California Gubernatorial Candidate (and Stanford alumna) Amanda Renteria, author & activist Ilyasah Shabazz (Malcolm X’s daughter), and the first transgender delegate to the Virginia State Legislature, Danica Roem.

As is integral to any organization committed to inspiring innovation in the long term, SWIP has also explicitly focused on building a pipeline of leaders, educators, and advocates who can continue the organization’s work into the future. Through their SWIP internships – or SWIPternships – program, their educational teach-ins, and other community development efforts, as well as their internal processes to smoothly transition leadership to emerging SWIP leaders, this organization walks the talk in terms of empowering and activating all members of a community towards a shared goal.

2018 has already proven to be an exciting year for women in politics nationwide, and with SWIP spearheading innovative efforts here on campus, it looks to be an exciting year for women in politics on the Farm as well. I look forward to the impact Stanford Women in Politics will continue to have on the Stanford community in years to come.

Femtastic Friday: May 25, 2018

Stanford affiliates: Sign up for our mailing list to receive the full Femtastic Friday email each week for information on upcoming events, updates from around campus, and other important WCC-related news!

Happy Friday from the WCC!

As we near the end of the quarter, WCC hosted a crafternoon today with ice cream sundae and waffles to appreciate the space and connect with other community members. Stay tuned for more exciting and wholesome events at the WCC. Feel free to join us at the Firetruck House for a warm cup of tea and a good company of people who appreciate your presence as you get ready to power through Week 9!

What’s New at the WCC?

1. Bridge Peer Counseling at the WCC
The WCC will be hosting a peer counselor from the Bridge on Friday afternoons from 3-6pm.
Swing by the WCC on Fridays from 3-6pm to talk to a Bridge counselor about school, family, friends, mental health issues, how your last midterm went, or anything in between. All counseling sessions are completely private and confidential.
Or, call the Bridge Peer Counseling Center anytime, day or night, at 650-723-3392.

2. Join us on every Tuesday afternoon for BEAM career advising!
Every Tuesday from 2-3:30pm BEAM Career Catalyst Joslyn Johnson will be having office hours in the WCC main lounge. Come for drop-in advising if you need help with resumes, cover letters, finding mentors, and preparing interviews. Joslyn feels passionate about helping students explore and find meaningful. We are excited to have Joslyn as your mentor and career coach!

3. Check out the Feminist Narrative Zine!
We are super excited to release the first Stanford Feminist Narratives Zine! We hope you enjoy this compilation of art and writing that aims to encompass some of the diverse feminist narratives that exist on this campus from our own peers. Hard copies will also be available for perusal at the WCC. We hope you enjoy!
Read HERE!

4. Give a listen to the latest WCC podcast, Our Names!
Listen to episodes 1 + 2 here!
Tune in to Episode 2 of Our Names, a WCC podcast by intern Tessa Lisanti, focusing on women’s relationships with last names. Through having conversations with women on campus whose decision to keep or change their last name through marriage was meaningful to them, the podcast delves into how culture, family, and feminism play into our choices regarding our names.
Just as much of feminism has been about reclaiming history and ensuring that women’s narratives aren’t forgotten, for many women, last names serve as a way to continue their own legacies. In episode 2, we explore how a woman’s name can encapsulate her individual identity, which includes her accomplishments, her relationships, and her feminist beliefs.

5. Check out another WCC podcast, Anatomy of a Feminist Icon!
Anatomy of a Feminist Icon investigates the meaning of the term “feminist icon,” using interviews with a sampling of members of the Stanford community. What does it mean to call somebody a feminist icon? Do feminist icons have to be famous? What role should these icons have in the feminist movement as a whole? This project seeks to investigate questions like these in order to help listeners gain a deeper understanding of the implications of this term to consider as they use it in everyday life.

[Image shows a Bridge Peer Counseling Center advertisement. Image is a screenshot of an iPhone text conversation from “the bestie.” Texts sent from phone read “hey” “are you awake” “i just really need to talk to someone right now” “hello?” with no response. A notification on top reads “Sometimes, it can’t wait till morning. We’re here for you 24/7. Call the Bridge (650) 723-3392.]



Interesting News and Other Reads

Here is an empowering article that shows how Dr. Claire Karekezi, survivor of the Rwanadan Genocide, will return to her home in July as the first and only female neurosurgeon in the entire country. Take a look for heartwarming inspiration.

We were thrilled to host Melissa Harris-Perry for an evening of conversation last Thursday. She is the Maya Angelou Presidential Chair at Wake Forest University, founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Center, Editor-at-Large, Elle.com and Author of Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America. To celebrate her presence on campus, we have included her article for The Nation.

It’s commencement speech season at universities across the country (we’re so close, and yet so far….) and, and if you need some inspiration, check out soccer star Abby Wambach’s recent address.

Today, May 25, people in Ireland will cast their votes to decide whether the 8th amendment of the country’s constitution – which currently makes abortion illegal in almost all cases – should be repealed. And people from Ireland living all over the world are traveling long distances home to cast their vote and sharing their journeys with the hashtag #hometovote.


Femtastic Friday: May 18, 2018

Stanford affiliates: Sign up for our mailing list to receive the full Femtastic Friday email each week for information on upcoming events, updates from around campus, and other important WCC-related news!

femtastic friday header.png

Happy Friday from the WCC!

This week, several notable activists, artists, and thinkers joined us on campus. We were honored to have Linda Sarsour join us at the WCC yesterday. She reminded us all, “Don’t respond to hate with hate. Respond to hate with conviction.” How are you responding with conviction in your life? What are you most passionate about? How do you center love and unapologetic dedication in your work- no matter what it is? Love is not always easy, and neither is confidence, but we at the WCC validate you and hear you in your pursuit of both.

Upcoming Events

A Feminist Conversation on Intersectional Politics: Melissa Harris-Perry in Conversation with Allyson Hobbs: Join us for an evening of conversation with feminist rockstar Melissa Harris-Perry and Stanford professor Allyson Hobbs on intersectional politics – how we push feminist causes forward in the current political environment, both on campus and nationally. Melissa Harris-Perry is the Maya Angelou Presidential Chair at Wake Forest University, founding director of the Anna Julia Cooper Center, Editor-at-Large at Elle.com, and author of Sister Citizen: Shame, Stereotypes, and Black Women in America.  (Wednesday, May 23, 5-6:30pm, Cubberley Auditorium)

End-of-Year Ice Cream Social and Crafternoon: Join us in an end-of-the-year celebration of our wonderful community. We will have a full ice cream sundae bar and house-made Belgian waffles (with non-dairy options as well), DIY crafts, music, and tea. Come through to enjoy the space, connect with other community members, and chill out during Week 8. (Friday, May 25, 1-4pm in the WCC Main Lounge)

#MeToo: A Conversation with Tarana Burke: Tarana Burke is an African American civil rights activist who in 2006 began using the phrase “Me Too” to raise awareness of the pervasiveness of sexual abuse and assault in society.  The phrase has since developed into a broader movement, following the 2017 use of #MeToo as a hashtag following the year’s biggest sexual abuse allegations. Tarana Burke will be joined in conversation by Alisa Bierria, PhD, current University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Gender & Women’s Studies at the University of California, Berkeley. (Tuesday, May 29, 6:00-7:30pm in Cubberley Auditorium)

Interesting News and Other Reads

Interested in the intersection between nonprofits and feminism? Ever heard of the nonprofit industrial complex? Read this article on what it takes to decolonize a nonprofit through the lens of black queer feminist organizer, Neesha Powell.

Sex consent apps are here and this feminist is not feeling it. This article by Reina Gattuso details all the reasons why sex apps (which basically treat consent as an all-or-nothing contract) are actually really bad. Firstly they don’t treat consent and relationships as the nuanced things that they are, but there’s a whole lot more to unpack, like why tech companies are dictating our sex lives in the first place.

CW: Sexual Assault. This powerful article addresses a pretty salient concern about the #MeToo movement. Why don’t we hear fat women’s #MeToo stories? It’s not because they don’t exist. 67% of American women are plus size. Yet mainstream feminism fails to acknowledge of humanity of 67% of American women. This article talks about the common responses fat women get when sharing their sexual assault experiences.

Rebecca Solnit explores the interconnected nature of sexism and capitalism, and what happens when sex is viewed as a commodity.

There are 476 women running for House seats this year. This visual analysis explores the significance.

Here’s five great questions to ask a mentor!

Anatomy of a Feminist Icon – a Podcast about the term “Feminist Icon”

This podcast investigates the meaning of the term “feminist icon,” using interviews with a sampling of members of the Stanford community. What does it mean to call somebody a feminist icon? Do feminist icons have to be famous? What role should these icons have in the feminist movement as a whole? This project seeks to investigate questions like these in order to help listeners gain a deeper understanding of the implications of this term to consider as they use it in everyday life.

Project Recap: I think we often use terms without really looking into their implications and nuances, so I wanted to attempt to do that with this project. It was extremely rewarding to get to interview such interesting, well-spoken people and to get to hear their perspectives. The format of a podcast really highlighted their voices and their opinions in a powerful way.

Listen here!

Workshop Recap: Meditation for Self Compassion

Last Friday, we hosted a Meditation for Self-Compassion event in the WCC lounge! Attendees got to hear from Reverend Grace Schireson about her personal journey with meditation and learned about some techniques for beginning meditation, particularly around breathing. I hope that everyone who attended was able to learn something and take some aspect of the workshop into their daily life. We all need to take a moment to just breathe sometimes!

For more WCC events, check out http://wcc.stanford.edu/events. We hope to see you soon!


Stanford Women’s Leadership Conference Intern

Self-Care Sunday

This past weekend on the 15th, I hosted a WCC Intern Project called “Self-Care Sunday”. It was filled with face-masks, nail-painting, snacks, and relaxing music. For me it was a wholesome and nourishing experience I definitely want to repeat.

During the event I realized how important background music was to the setting the mood of the event. I loved how when I was playing more pop music I saw people dancing and talking, when I tried playing wind-pipe music later on everyone got a lot more quite and contemplative.

I also really enjoyed how easy it was to make conversation in a safe-space where everyone was painting their nails or sitting around with their face-masks. It felt natural for me to talk to the new people that came to the event.

Finally, it was really great to see the different forms of self-care people came to do. Some were taking part in the activities and enjoying themselves. Other people were on the side eating snacks and doing homework while still enjoying themselves. I found this really interesting.

I hope to see you at an event soon!

As always, we have our upcoming WCC events listed online at  ttp://wcc.stanford.edu/events.

Kay|Stanford Women’s Leadership Conference 2018 Intern