The Women’s Center at UMBC turns 25 this year! We’re excited to share our important milestone with UMBC’s 50th Anniversary and will be celebrating throughout the year with the rest of campus! We were inspired by Special Collections archival project Archives Gold: 50 Objects for UMBC’s 50th and decided to do our own digging into the Women’s Center archives. Over the course of the year, we’ll be sharing 25 “Then vs Now” archives to celebrate the origin and evolution of the Women’s Center at UMBC.
This week we’re featuring the Women’s Center staffs from over the years!
When the Women’s Center first opened in 1991, there was only enough funding for a part-time director to work twelve hours a week. The Women’s Union, a feminist student organization, helped to enlist student volunteers who collectively contributed a total of 50 hours per week in order to keep the space open for those seeking resources and services. Paula Morton was named the first director and held part-time hours starting in December 1991 until October 1992. For another part of the early part of the Women’s Center history, students would have to find Simmona Simmons, a founding committee member, in the library to get the key to the Center (and you can still find Simmona in the library today! When you see her thank her for all of her hard work in making the Women’s Center a reality!!) .
In 2016, the Women’s Center operates with 2 full-time staff members and 6 student staff and interns and volunteers. Together they provide space, services, and programs (over 150 a year!) and make contact with almost 10,000 visits a year.
This week we celebrate our 25th anniversary with a birthday party! Meet some of former Women’s Center staff members and directors, celebrate our 25 years, and wish us a 25 years (plus some!) more! For details on the party which will be hosted on September 13th from 4-6pm, click here.
What are the memories you have of the Women’s Center over the years that are meaningful to you? What does the Women’s Center mean to you today? Share your memories and pictures with us in the comment section below!
Stay up-to-date with our 25th anniversary on social media using #UMBCWC25. Share your Women’s Center experiences and memories with the UMBC community using #UMBCWC25 AND #UMBC50!