International Women’s day took place at Acadia on Tuesday March 8th. This was a day where women were able to come together and acknowledge the contributions that the female gender has made and will continue to make on a social, political, and economic level. This day highlights the fact that female work is often overlooked. It also emphasizes the awareness issues that take place with regards to female issues. An important component of the international celebration is that it is international. Many women in different countries still face gender issues due to biased laws, and are more likely to be uneducated or unable to deal with the hardships of poverty and food insecurity as a direct result of their gender. This is why it’s important to celebrate the things that women do, and to continue to strive for more equality around the world.
This is why it’s so great that Acadia has taken part in the celebration of women. The following is a brief description of the events that took place in Wolfville, and the effects that they have had on our town and campus.
International Women’s day at Acadia focused on gender equality within the University student population. There was a large gathering on campus consisting of students, faculty, and town members. One topic that was addressed during this gathering was the use of social media platforms, such as Yik Yak and the infamous Tinder. This discussion lead to an exploration of the role social media plays in encouraging gender inequality on our campus. Groups focused on creating solutions which could make our campus safer for both male and female students, and providing faculty members with possible changes which could be made in order to improve this issue.
The following day, one hundred attendees from across the country took part in Champion, which was a day-long seminar intended for women and girls to discuss the issues faced by females in sports. A variety of speakers took part in this event who work in sports related fields. Attendees listened to speakers talk about Global statistics and work in gender equality both in and out sport. Let’s take a second and do a brief history of women in sports, back during the Roman Empire. Every four years the Olympics took place, in which men participated in competitive sports while women weren’t allowed in the arena! Fast forward a couple thousand years to 1967 – Kathrine Switzer was the first official female runner in the Boston marathon. In protest of her attendance, a group of men circled, heckled, and tried to stop her from completing the race. Did you know that today 60 percent of marathon runners are men, while merely 40 percent are women?
After initial Women’s Day presentations, attendees took part in a cafe style discussion and engaged with speakers. Individuals were able to interact with one another and visit booths to gather more information about the speakers and their roles in sports.
Acadia is a great school to go to, but there are ways that we could add to the female empowerment that is already taking place. Some students believe that there are ample opportunities for Acadia and its students to effectively address sexism issues such as consent. As a whole, Acadia has done a great job with working towards female empowerment and addressing sexual consent, but we as a society still have a long road ahead of us in order to build a safer and better environment fo