By Shierly Mondianti
For Northwest Asian Weekly
To many people, March 8 was just another day of the year. However, to a group of students at North Seattle Community College, it represented a day where months of hard work was showcased to the public. Friday, March 8 was the Second Annual International Women’s Day Event on North Seattle Community College’s campus.
International Women’s Day originally grew out of a celebration by the Socialist Party of America in 1909, but has since achieved U.N. recognition and shed much of its political overtones. It is now a day to celebrate the achievements and progress of women, and each year, the U.N. releases a new theme for the day. In 2013, the International Women’s Day theme was “A Promise is a Promise: Time for Action to End Violence Against Women.”
The event was hosted last year by a group of women enrolled in North Seattle Community College who had started the school’s Feminist Alliance in the fall of 2012. Aiming to take a global focus on the ways to spread gender awareness on campus, North Seattle’s Feminist Alliance organized an event aimed to create a bridge between the local students and the growing international student body.
Collaborating with international students, North Seattle’s Feminist Alliance hosted the school’s First Annual International Women’s Day on March 8, 2012. The event united cultural foods, traditional costumes, and informational poster-boards on women of various countries and attracted over 3,000 college students and faculty members.
This year, North Seattle’s Feminist Alliance presented the Second Annual International Women’s Day.
Additions to the event included tables for countries such as Germany, Nepal, Cameroon, and Indonesia, as well as organizations, such as the Girl’s Scouts, New Beginnings, and Planned Parenthood. Featuring works of art by women was also one of the great highlights to this year’s celebration.
Planning for International Women’s Day started in early January. After observing Roe V. Wade Day on campus, North Seattle’s Feminist Alliance came together and delegated tasks between members. While some volunteered to represent their own countries, others were busy working with the international programs office, contributing women’s art, inviting local chapters of national organizations, and promoting the event.
Their hard work paid off. The event attracted many students and faculty members. Large national flags were displayed in front of each table, and behind the tables, women of various national origins were stationed, ready to answer any questions and serve their country’s food.
By bringing women together and allowing them to be the primary voice of the campus, North Seattle’s Feminist Alliance had created an opportunity for their multi-cultural women peers to share stories of women’s struggles and successes all over the world. (end)
Shierly Mondianti can be reached at email@example.com.