Before CU Denver, I was a proud student at Fort Lewis College. Say what you want about Fort Leisure—I mean Fort Loser—I mean Snort Lewis—it was fun. And it was wholly unique in terms of settings, sitting quietly on top of a plateau overlooking the Animas Valley of quaint houses and few major streets.
Living in the dorms up there was serene. In the afternoons while napping after classes I would awake to deer rustling outside my window, chewing on the dry grass beneath the two-story tree that bloomed in spring.
With first whispers of spring each year the women’s history classes celebrated International Women’s Day. It wasn’t like CU Denver’s, which has a Women’s Leadership Conference on Thursday, March 10, in addition to several other events oriented around celebrating the lives and impacts of women in our global communities. By the way, you can read about all of the IWD events taking place this week in next week’s March 16 issue of the Sentry.
The Fort Lewis celebration of IWD was a lot more haphazardly thrown together by a bunch of folks who would rather spend their time outdoors than in. My contribution—an event flyer—was small, but my participation was imperative to my education, as I hadn’t heard of IWD until joining that event team for my women’s history class.
The IWD events were great, but pretty uninspiring. Two movie nights, screening the classic Thelma and Louise and one of Julia Roberts’ greatest roles in Mona Lisa Smile, were capped at the end of the week by a crap-fest open mic night that ended gloriously with free food at the local pub, Lost Dog. And despite our unsurprisingly low turnout to these events, the point was we did more than anyone else in that town to promote the celebration of IWD.
So often women’s actions are dismissed as being superficial, and so often appreciating women’s contribution amounts to simply saying, “I love women.” It’s not enough to declare your allegiance or alliance with a gender, but you must really understand why it’s important to stop and remember these contributions— to remember concrete ways in which women matter throughout history and at this very moment.