Last week, the Office of Multicultural Student Life at Augie reached out to Her Campus to co-host a discussion about feminism and womanism. As such, we wanted to highlight the wonderful ladies behind the idea of the event, Lydia Lara and Marlén Gomez.
What year are each of you? What are you each involved with on campus?
Lydia: I am a junior. I am involved in the OMSL office (Office of Multicultural Student Life), the OSL Multicultural Programming Board, Augustana Concert Band, the Black Student Union, Latinos Unidos, and SOUL (sisterhood of unique Ladies).
Marlén: I am a senior. I am involved with the Augustana Observer, the OMSL office and the Asian Student Organization.
Do you have any interesting facts about yourselves?
L: I know three languages (Spanish, English and Latin).
M: I broke my right hand when I was young and became left handed.
What made you want to be involved with the Office of Multicultural Student Life? More specifically, what made you want to be program coordinators?
L: The office has always meant so much to me. Ever since my first year at Augustana, the office was like a home. It was a place where I knew I would have people that I could rely on. It has been an amazing resource! Once I was an upperclassman I wanted to be a figure in the office who could offer younger students the same resources that can help them thrive at Augustana and in college. I’ve also had an interest in teaching others, so as a program coordinator my job includes being in front of people and teaching them something. It has become one of my passions.
M: In my years here at Augustana I was able to discover more about myself and the world around me through the programs I attended that came from the OMSL office. It was nice learning about my social identity, but I also realized there were so many other identities out there not given enough attention due to dominant identities being set as the standard and seen as the norm. I was able to learn, but I wanted to be able to use my knowledge to teach others.
What do you hope to gain from hosting different conversation series’ on campus?
L: I’m hoping to help expand the minds of those who attend the series’ and the mentality that they carry from their cultures, of places they come from, etc. But, more importantly, I hope that the conversations I host elicit change on our campus. That they’ll help individuals who go out into the world to understand the way the world works and be compassionate towards others.
M: I want to be part of a change in hopes that other people can discover something about themselves or question the world around them through the programs I put on.
What made you want to talk about feminism and womanism?
L: Besides it being International Women’s Month, I think that it’s also important to differentiate and also unite the ideologies and the movements that womanists and feminists both have. I’m hoping that the session will help in the uniting of the causes of women.
M: Womanism is often overlooked in feminist circles and I want help bring more awareness to it.
Is there anything else you want people to know about this event?
L: I was asked, before marketing the event, if men could attend this event. I wanted to make it clear that all people, including men and anyone who identifies themselves as something other than a woman, can come to the event. The point is to learn and hopefully take away insights that will help us with our mentalities about feminism and womanism within society. We are hoping to host a diverse crowd there!
Augie’s Her Campus team is so thankful to be collaborating with the OMSL office and Marlén and Lydia. It’s important to educate and hold open discussions about these topics to eliminate stigma surrounding them. We hope to see you all there!