Stanford Womxn’s Coalition wins the 2019 SAL Campus Impact Award for Capturing the Spirit

WCC WoCo SAL award

Members of the Stanford Womxn’s Coalition and staff advisors at the SAL Campus Impact Awards Ceremony on May 23, 2019.

Women’s Community Center Assistant Dean & Associate Director Marta Hanson shared the following remarks when presenting the 2019 SAL Campus Impact Award for Capturing the Spirit to the Stanford Womxn’s Coalition on May 23, 2019.

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 Womxn’s Coalition for the SAL Campus Impact Award for Capturing the Spirit.

The Stanford Womxn’s Coalition, or WoCo, offers a dynamic space to engage with issues of intersectional feminism, to create educational programming that serves to involve the larger Stanford community in womxn’s issues, and to facilitate a group dedicated to empowerment and mentorship. They also aim to build alliances with and support other WVSOs on campus and serve as advocates in ASSU and university administration policy-making regarding issues that affect womxn at Stanford.

WoCo’s leadership on campus this year has been present from the first weeks of school, when the Ford/Kavanaugh Supreme Court hearings shook many of us to our core. In response, WoCo hosted a “We believe survivors because…” interactive art campaign to engage passers-by in reflection and conversation. This positive, proactive approach to a controversial and deeply challenging topic demonstrated their keen understanding of the context-specific dynamics at play, the nuance of advocacy for marginalized voices, and a commitment to a justice-oriented response.

Though WoCo, as a student organization, has been around for many years, the group is a model of the reflecting and evolving necessary to stay relevant and impactful in changing – and challenging – times. This year, WoCo hosted a gender-inclusive rendition of The Vagina Monologues entitled “Dear ______,”: A Collection of Monologues on the Experiences of Gender, which highlighted Stanford students’ varied experiences with their own gender identities, performances, and expectations – thus responding to the needs of the campus community and providing a platform to uplift students’ voices.

WoCo’s efforts this year have ranged from collaborative workshops to policy talks on human trafficking environmental justice; from a digital literature and arts magazine to a conversation on disparities in public health with Dr. Leana Wen of Planned Parenthood. Through all of this, they have not only ensured an inclusive and intersectional approach, but also carried a commitment to building a leadership pipeline and empowering younger members to step into leadership roles and try their own hand at being the change they wish to see.

This campus – and this world – needs more groups committed to inclusive, justice-oriented practices, and it’s been a joy to see the intentional effort and impact of WoCo this year. I look forward to seeing how the Stanford Womxn’s Coalition will continue serve the Stanford community in the years to come.


Womxn in STEM Symposium 2019

On February 28th, The WCC held its annual symposium for Women in STEM. This year’s keynote was Regina Wallace, a Stanford alum with a bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering, president of Streetcode Academy, and currently serving as vice mayor of East Palo Alto. Regina discussed her career path, her Stanford experience, jobs, and gave students some advice about being a woman in STEM.

Copy of Women in STEM Symposium.jpg

After the speech participants joined in on 25-minute workshops on micro-aggression, interview skills, and salary negotiation. In the workshops, students worked with professionals from BEAM and CAPS to gain tangible skills they could implement inside and outside Stanford.

The event had around 40 people attend. Participants also received gift bags with Steminist Swag items including pens, notebooks, stickers, and snacks. Overall the event was a great opportunity for Stanford womxn in STEM to engage in conversation and workshops to help them succeed in their various departments and careers.


How to Connect to Opportunities by Thinking (and Networking!) Like a Designer : Networking Workshop Recap

Last Wednesday, we had an amazing Networking Workshop with Kathy Davies from Stanford’s Life Design Lab. We discussed reframing networking as asking for directions (just as you would ask for directions when you’re lost or you would willingly help someone asking for directions to the Caltrain Station). Inviting professionals to information interviews works the same way. Kathy shared with us los of specific pieces of advice on where to look for resources, how to invite someone to interviews (e.g. an email template), and what to keep in mind during these interviews. We also had opportunities to roleplay in-person networking.


Here are a few of my favorite tips about information interviews:

  • A quick how-to-guide for information interviews:
    • Ask for a 30 minutes coffee chat.
    • Do some homework about the person you’re meeting. Show that you care and are interested in their work.
    • Don’t forget your manners and show gratitude (e.g. offer to buy coffee – insist on paying at least 3 times!, show up earlier, stay in touch)
    • Ask for 3 more referrals (e.g. “Do you know anybody in xyz?”). The more you talk to people in your target domain, the more familiar you will become with their lingo and the details of the work. Once you keep the ball in play, the domain might start to recognize you, too!
  • Inbound versus Outbound Networking:
    • Inbound Networking: When you’re reaching out to people in your target domain. Often through LinkedIn, cold emails, SAM (Stanford Alumni Mentoring). Inbound networking could be a little more scary because you’re trying to connect with people you might not necessarily know, but this could be very effective in getting you to the target domain if it does happen! Stanford Alumni Mentoring is a great place to start because mentors on SAM have expressed their interests in becoming your mentors (Remember that they love to talk to students and offer advice; that’s why they’ve made themselves available on SAM).
    • Outbound Networking: When you’re talking to people you already know about your interest and asking for referrals. This might take a little longer because your network might not have direct connections to your target domain, but outbound networking is more accessible and low-stress. The more vocal you are about your interests and needs, the more people around you can help you reach your target domain.

Kathy leads ME104B: Designing Your Life, a class offered every quarter, where you can get more experience networking, planning your journey after college, and implementing specific plans to achieve your career/life goals. Please visit the website to learn more about this transformative course and how to get involved with Life Design Lab.

Here are more ‘Networking like a Designer’ resources: Click on the Resources tab to get snippets of the class. The resources include a link to the virtual design thinking crash course, videos on “Designing Your Career,” “Odyssey Planning,” “Prototyping Your Life,” and articles to upgrade your networking skills.

In addition, Kathy has great insights to share about networking and mentorship, and would be happy to meet with any students. You can book her office hours through: or email her at

Joslyn Johnson from BEAM also holds regular office hours at WCC on Tuesdays from 2:00-3:30PM.

Stay tuned for spring WCC workshops on networking/how to find mentors on SAM 101/LinkedIn profile.

– Alex, Academic Coordinator at WCC

WCC + Hume Application Writing Workshop Recap

Exploring Allyship.jpgOn Friday, January 11th, the Women’s Community Center hosted an application writing workshop for summer intern/fellowships, featuring Dr. Norah Fahim, Associate Director at the Hume Center for Writing and Speaking. The speaker gave a brief overview of what makes a compelling application, how to distinguish between cover letters and personal statements, and how to “connect the dots” in combining your passion with your summer plans. The second hour of the workshop was joined by Dr. Wendy Goldberg, a Hume writing instructor, who provided students with individual feedback. The workshop participants had a chance to reflect on their personal values and career goals, and work with the Hume instructors.

Here are a few of my key takeaways:
1. Connect the dots. Especially when writing a personal statement, be sure to include why you are interested in the work you’re pursuing and what are some of your previous coursework or experiences that have led you to this work. It’s not necessary to have directly relevant experience or any work experience at all, but it can help you explain “why” you are passionate and what has made you become passionate.
2. How is a personal statement different from a resume? Since your resume is likely to list all the relevant work experiences/research/coursework, your job in writing a personal statement is to connect the individual dots from your resume and show how you’ve developed as a person/scholar/researcher/activist/artist. Some questions to consider in the process: What have I learned/gained from my previous experience? If something didn’t go well or surprised you from your previous experience, what was it and what did you struggle with?
3. You don’t have to focus only on your successes. Show how you’ve grown and learned from your mistakes.
4. Think about how to best communicate your passion and interest. Keep in mind, you need to convince the reader that you are a good fit for the work because of _____ (many reasons that you should be able to list)!

If you want some dedicated time to work on your application or any writing assignment, come to the satellite writing tutoring at the WCC every Thursday evening from 7-9:00pm. Peer tutors will be available to guide you through every stage of your writing, whether it be brainstorming ideas or polishing final drafts. You’re also highly encouraged to sign up for Hume appointments and the link to setting up appointments can be found here:

It’s never too late to start. Plan ahead and get started for your summer!

Alex Nam
WCC Academic Coordinator

Summer Opportunities Info Session Recap

Last Wednesday, November 28th, we had an info session for different summer opportunities featuring professional staff and student advisors from the Haas Center for Public Service, Handa Center for Human Rights and International Justice, Global Studies Internship Program, and Undergraduate Advising and Research.

The major takeaway is: Don’t get intimidated by the application process or the overwhelming amount of opportunities available to you. This means there is a perfect fit waiting for you! Get started with your search now and own your summer experience.


Here are the summaries of presentations + Q&A sessions for each center:

Refer below for useful links and updates on additional info sessions and workshops hosted by each center.


Emma Hartung Cardinal Quarter Coordinator has shared the slides from her presentation and other useful links to get started on connecting with community partners and help you navigate different Haas summer fellowships. This link contains information on finding community partners, and fellowship application timeline. Click here for a list of fellowships offered this year and customize your search by selecting locations, pre-assigned/self-designed, and appropriate grade levels.

The Haas Center also has walk-in-advising with program staff on Fridays between 12-3pm on the second floor or you can email to set up an appointment.


Take a look here to learn about different fellowships offered through Handa Center.

Same as most other applications, Handa applications are due in early February. Handa Center for Human Rights and International Justice is looking for applicants with passion, ability to make a local or global impact, and appropriate understanding of the cultural working context. Come to office hours to talk with professional staff and advisors about your interest and get connected with community partners, either national or international, based on your interest. Important questions to ponder when designing your own fellowships: 1. Are you interested in working in a specific region? Do you want to practice a specific language? 2. Are you interested in working on a specific human rights topic?

Then, start looking for names of organizations that often appear in literature or news about particular human rights topics that you feel passionate about. If the organization you’re interested in has a big name (sometimes, this means having a more rigorous application process or deadline), check out community partners that work closely with or are sponsored by the “big-name” organization. You might be able to make a larger impact working on a local project.

Handa Center will host an info session on Summer Fellowships and Internships on Monday, January 14th at 4pm in Encina Hall West 219.

Global Studies Internship

Peer advisor Joanne Shang has shared the slides from her presentation. Applications open in early January and close in February, so start looking through the list of internships. Plan ahead especially if you’re interested in a self-designed internship. Global Studies Internship Program will host a comprehensive info session on Tuesday, January 15th at 4pm in Oksenberg Room, 3rd Floor Encina Hall Central.


UAR provides departmental grants, major grants, and small grants. Small grants are due on the 1st of every month and they could be used for part-time research work (e.g. If you are traveling to China for another internship and have a sociology project in mind, you can apply for a small grant to lead the research alongside your internship.) Grants during the academic year do not fund salaries/lodging/living expenses, but grants during the summer can provide salaries/lodging/living expenses. Contact your academic advisor or Research Communities Manager Jill Wentzell at wentzell@stanford for more information.

Visit this website for more information on research grants. This year’s information will be updated in January, but feel free to gauge at past opportunities to start your plans. Most of these programs are frosh/sophomore friendly unless otherwise stated by the department.

Other general tips for finding fellowships/research opportunities:

  1. How to connect with Faculty Advisors: Visit them during office hours. Look for their office hours on their websites (google search) or email Student Services Officer (SSO, for short) for information on their office hours. Get on mailing lists for departments you are interested in. Many research opportunities are announced through department mailing lists.
  2. Departmental grant programs for the summer (*except Bio-X Summer Research Program) do not require you to find your own faculty mentors. Apply through UAR and get connected with a faculty mentor. 
  1. How to connect with local organizations and mentors outside Stanford:
    • Look for Stanford alumni on LinkedIn and Stanford Alumni Mentoring (SAM).
    • Reach out to community partners in various creative ways (e.g. look for specific names and emails, make calls, try connecting to multiple people in the same organization).
  2. If you need help connecting with mentors, use resources at BEAM. Career Catalyst Joslyn Johnson ( holds regular office hours in the WCC on Tuesdays from 2-3:00pm.

Tips for writing a compelling application:

  1. Show your passion and interest. Tell the reader why you are applying for this position/internship. Although some applications look for experience and specific skills, many of them look for why you are interested in this particular opportunity, not necessarily how much previous experience you already have.

WCC will host an application writing workshop with Hume Writing tutors in early Winter Quarter, so keep an eye out for it!


Academic Coordinator

Workshop Recap: LinkedIn 101 Workshop with Joslyn Johnson, BEAM Assistant Director of Career Catalysts

On November 9th, we had our first Self Advocacy series LinkedIn 101 Workshop with Joslyn Johnson, BEAM Assistant Director of Career Catalysts. We discussed effective ways to leverage LinkedIn profile, connect with alumni and potential employers through search features, and write concise headers and job descriptions to promote yourself. We also provided free professional headshots thanks to our student photographer Elizabeth Gray. We will organize similar/follow-up workshops on LinkedIn in upcoming quarters, so stay tuned!

Here are a few of my favorite takeaways:

  1. Set up informational interviews with future mentors! As much as companies are trying to look for best candidates, you should also be searching for companies that best fit your interest and work style. Get a head start on your job search by taking sufficient time to research what each company does, how it feels to work there (e.g. mentorship opportunities, teamwork dynamics, work life balance, and what a regular work day might look like for an intern or someone who’s just starting) and learn more about what it means to work in a certain industry. It’s never too early to start connecting with people working in areas of your interest.
  2. Strategize your headers with concrete action verbs. Depending on your skill sets, interests, and levels of experience, choose among recruiter strategy, impact strategy, directional strategy to help employers easily find you and know who you are. Take a look at these slides for a sample writing of each strategy.

Joslyn has generously shared these slides from the workshop in addition to the Student LinkedIn Handbook (Part 1, 2 & 3), which you can access here: Follow the link to Part 1 (which covers creating and crafting a LinkedIn profile, who to add in your contacts, LinkedIn profile versus traditional resumes), Part 2 (tips on job searching and reaching out to mentors and employers), and Part 3 (which covers interviewing tools, specifically how to answer background/personality, behavioral, situational questions). Feel free to look through the table of contents to find what you need.

For a short introduction to LinkedIn, watch this video provided by LinkedIn for college students navigating the website.

Joslyn is an incredible resource for career coaching and has regular office hours at the Women’s Community Center on Tuesdays from 2:00-3:00pm. Also feel free to visit her during her office hours at Black Community Services Center on Tuesdays from 1:00-2:00pm and El Centro Chicano y Latino on Fridays from 10:00-11:00am.

Hope to see you at another WCC event!


Academic Coordinator

Stanford Women’s Community Center



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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.

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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“]

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.