What is V-Day?

By Bonnie Messbarger

To put it simply; V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls. On February 14th 1998 American playwright and activist, Eve Ensler, created the VDay event. Ensler along with a group of women established V-Day as a universal day to stop violence against women.  Since then the V-Day movement has exploded and is now recognized in over 140 countries with roughly 1500 events taking place each year. To find out more information about V-Day or how you can get involved, visit their website.


Be sure to check out local VDay events hosted by your UMKC Women’s Center. http://www.umkc.edu/womenc/vday2012.asp

For further information or with questions contact the Women’s Center at 816.235.1638 or umkc-womens-center@umkc.edu

Celebrate VDAY!

By Tria Tatum




Show your UMKC support at the upcoming Women’s Center Events.

Monday, February 13th, 2012. 11am-1pm
Stop by and visit our VDay information table on campus at the Health Sciences Building! The Women’s Center will be selling chocolate vagina pops, t-shirts and buttons and providing information about your UMKC Women’s Center and VDay!
Click HERE for more information.

Thursday, February 16, 2012. 7-10pm
“Vagina Monologues”
Join us for a night of theater in the UMKC Student Union.
Purchase your tickets in advance $15 ($10 student price). At the door tickets are $20 ($15 for students).
Click HERE for more information.

 Tuesday, February 21, 2012. 11am-12pm
The Women’s Center and the UMKC Violence Prevention and Response Project will be hosting a workshop for MEN ONLY. A group of dedicated V-Men will participate in a conversation about ending violence against women and girls. FREE ADMISSION
Click HERE for more information.


To register and see additional event details visit our calendar page:

For further information or with questions contact the Women’s Center at 816.235.1638 or umkc-womens-center@umkc.edu

Join us to celebrate 40 years of telling our stories with the UMKC Women’s Center!

‘Stitches’ Opening Reception This Evening

By Sarah L. Jensen
Good morning supporters and fans of the Women’s Center! We hope you will be joining us for the “Stitches” opening reception this evening: February 2, 5:30pm at Miller Nichols Library, Dean’s Gallery, 2nd Floor, 800 East 51st St. The exhibit will be featuring textile artist NedRa Bonds and the Women’s Equity Quilt. Also, for your viewing pleasure, there will be a performance of Stitches: Some Stories About L.I.F.E. written by UMKC alumn Kathleen Shaw. To register and see additional event details visit our calendar page: http://www.umkc.edu/womenc/events/calendar.asp
For further information or with questions contact the Women’s Center at 816.235.1638 or umkc-womens-center@umkc.edu

Introducing Miss Sarah!

By Sarah L. Jensen
Hey there, my name is Sarah and I am a new intern for the Women’s Center! My goals are to further my understanding of women from different cultural backgrounds and to promote awareness of women’s issues.
I spent three years studying English literature at the University of Kansas before transferring to UMKC so I can finish my BA with a minor in Women and Gender studies. I have a strong passion for women’s literature and the culture surrounding it. In the future I plan on pursuing a PhD in English literature and teaching at the collegiate level.
Outside of academia I enjoy geeking out with films and music, cooking, reading, spending time with my family, and exploring Kansas City.
I am looking forward to this enlightening opportunity!

Ohio Woman Wants ‘Whites Only’ Pool Sign Reinstated

By Bonnie Messbarger

A woman in Ohio continues to claim that having a ‘Whites Only’ sign hung at the public pool is not racist.  The landlord claims that young black women’s hair products make her pool cloudy. The Ohio Civil Rights Commission ruled that the sign “restricts the social contact between Caucasians and African Americans as well as reinforcing discrimination actions that are aimed at oppressing all ‘people of color.'” Despite the Commission’s ruling, the woman still insists that her sign is not racist. Now she is asking the Ohio Civil Rights Commission to reconsider their ruling, changing her argument to assert that the sign is an antique and therefore apart of her heritage. Antique or not, hopefully the Civil Rights Commission will continue to reject this woman’s plea for the right to hang this incredibly racist sign.

New Blog Editor at the Women’s Center

By  Courtney Neaveill

Greetings everyone! My name is Courtney Neaveill and I am the new Blog Editor at the UMKC Women’s Center. In the fifth grade I had a regular habit of telling people that I was going to be the first woman president. Although my plans since then have changed, I still maintain an avid interest in women’s equality and women’s issues. I am in my fourth and final semester at UMKC and plan to graduate in May with my Bachelor’s degree in Modern European History and a German Language minor. Outside of working at the Women’s Center and tutoring German at the Language Resource Center, I am also working on two research projects in the History Department. Before arriving at UMKC, I lived for two years in Berlin, Germany where I worked as an Au Pair and tutored English. My goal is to return to Germany after graduation, where I would like to pursue a Master’s degree in the field of German History. Outside of my busy work and school schedule, I always fancy a night out on the town – either exploring local eateries or attending concerts by Kansas City’s world class musicians! The Women’s Center has given me the opportunity to participate in an important organization at a local level and for that I am very thankful. Through my involvement at the Women’s Center I hope to broaden my range of knowledge about current women’s issues which I can then apply to my studies and future endeavors. There are a variety of events on the calendar this semester and I am anxious to take part in the excitement!

New Intern Brings International Perspective to UMKC Women’s Center

By Carolina Costa

Hello everyone! My name is Carolina Costa and I am an intern at the Women’s Center. This is only my second semester at UMKC where I am an exchange student for the 2011/2012 year. As much as I enjoy my time in Kansas City, I will be returning to my home university in London next fall to complete the last year of my BA degree in Political Science and International Relations. I love to travel and experience different cultures, which leaves little time to enjoy my home city of A Coruña in the North of Spain. I have always been interested in gender issues and women’s equality and I believe that working at the Women’s Center will be a great opportunity to expand my knowledge and take part in many interesting and unique events.  It will also be a valuable insight into the work of feminist organizations that will prepare me for a future career in the field of women’s rights.  I really look forward to the next couple of months and I am ready to start my time at the Women’s Center!

What’s Coming Up for the Spring Semester?

By Tria Tatum 

Welcome back UMKC students, staff, and faculty! I hope everyone’s winter break was enjoyable and you returned to campus ready to conquer another semester with success. This week the Women’s Center started off our semester of programs with Warm Up with the Women’s Center and served hot chocolate and fresh baked cookies to about 50 students who found their way to our office last Monday. In case you forgot over the break, the Women’s Center is located right here on campus in 105 Haag Hall and we are here to assist you. Please feel free to stop in for some quiet study time, to utilize the computers, to check out some books on women’s issues and empowerment (possibly for your next essay!), or to just hang out with the staff. If you can’t stop by, but you happen to be in Haag Hall heading to class, don’t forget to check out the display boards on the first floor right outside our office. We have a board titled “What’s Coming up 4 the Spring Semester?” that will give you a heads up on all the great events we have planned for you.

Here are some highlights of what we have coming up: During the month of January you will be seeing the Women’s Center staff at various locations across campus distributing information about National Stalking Awareness Month. In February we will be hosting a number of V-Day events including a benefit performance of the Vagina Monologues on Thursday, February 16 in the Student Union Theater featuring a cast of 26 UMKC students, staff, faculty and folks from the community. We will also be hosting a screening of MissRepresentation followed by a panel discussion on Tuesday, February 28. In March we will be celebrating Women’s History Month with various events including an information table in Royall Hall on International Women’s Day, March 8. Then in April we will cap off our year-long celebration of the Women’s Center’s 40th Anniversary with our Fundraising Gala on April 20, featuring entertainment by the Barclay Martin Ensemble. As always, you can also find out about the Women’s Center and all our events on our website.

If you would like to be an even bigger part of some of these events, please consider being a Women’s Center volunteer. We encourage all students to take the opportunity to volunteer. Not only does this look good on your resumes, we guarantee that you will have a great time meeting new people while you learn something new. You can find the volunteer form in the lower right corner of the Women’s Center home page.  Simply fill it out and turn it to the Women’s Center front desk. We hope to see you this semsester!

New Face at the Women’s Center

by Armelle Djoukoue

Hello! My name is Armelle Stephanie Djoukoue and I’m a new work-study student at the Women’s Center. I’m a pre-med student majoring in psychology and minoring in Spanish. I will graduate fall 2012 and afterwards, I am planning to pursue a master’s degree in substance abuse counseling or addiction studies. I would love to become a psychiatrist one day, but I hesitate when I think about spending 4 years in med school! I’m really excited about working at the Women’s center because it’s a new experience and great opportunity for me. I believe raising awareness on women’s issues is very important and I’m truly grateful to be a part of it. I’m looking forward to increasing my knowledge on issues such as violence against women, sexual assault and body image. I’ve always wanted to work in an environment which empowers girls and women, and I know the women center is a great place for me to learn and accomplish that. Happy New Year!