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College History Club hosts event on women’s history

| Friday, April 6, 2018

The students of Saint Mary’s History Club hosted an event where students discussed women who inspire them and the future of the history department at Saint Mary’s. The event focused on the women of the past and how they inspire the women of Saint Mary’s. It was an open conversation.

Club leader Ali Tipton, a senior history major, presented on Monique Mujawamariya, a Rwandan Genocide survivor and activist.

Psychology major and senior Taylor Thomas presented on Patricia Hill Collins, the first woman African American president of the American Sociological Association and a professor at the University of Maryland.

“I’ve used that book [Black Feminist Thought] every day of my life, and I quote it every five seconds in my senior composition,” Thomas said. “My advisor keeps telling me that I need to get other sources, but for me Collins is the source. … I pretty much live and breathe it.”

The students and professors talked about the future of the history program and their desire for a Women’s Studies Masters program.

“It would be nice if we had more African History classes,” Tipton said.

She reminisced about past classes such as History of Genocide in the Modern World, “without which I would not know what I wanted to study in graduate school.”

“I really wish that there was an African American studies major,” Thomas said. “I just wish that we could broaden up the field of studies within the major.”

Tipton said the major needed more specification.

“How do we get [the administration] to listen to us?” she said.

Stacy Davis, a professor of Religious Studies and Gender Women’s Studies, said students need to let professors know they want certain classes.

“The argument professors need to make is that there is student interest, so you need to say that [you are interested],” she said.

Tipton said the club meetings are laid back, but that the event provides “a crucial part of Women’s history.”

With the event, the History Club presented not only how the work of women affected them, but offered advice and guidance to the women who are only a few years younger than them.

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