The Susan B. Anthony Center works to bring awareness to, and advocate for, social justice and equity. To increase student involvement in this work, the Center established the Student Advisory Board (SAB) in Spring 2015 to create event programming that corresponds with student’s local and national social justice advocacy interests. Board members represent the student body’s need for programming that focuses on issues that are important to them, including but not limited to feminism, violence against women, women’s leadership, empowerment, marginalized groups on and off campus, LGBTQIA issues, and allyship. Members are comprised of undergraduate students across various class years and majors. They meet one to two times per month during the semester to advise the Center on social justice issues that event programming could focus on, help in the planning of such events as well as create their own event programming under Center advisement, and act as liaisons to the student body by promoting Center events. The board also conducts outreach with University departments and student groups to create co-sponsorships that support campus initiatives that work to overcome inequality.
Fall 2017 through Spring 2018: Sexual Misconduct Policy Task Force
With the University’s sexual misconduct policies and procedures under review during the 2017–18 academic year, the Undergraduate Students’ Association (SA) Government Executive Branch expressed interest in contributing to the review process to improve policy effectiveness and implementation. The Executive Branch subsequently created the Sexual Misconduct Policy Task Force and is charged with reviewing University policies and procedures as they relate to sexual misconduct between students. It is co-chaired by Jordan Smith, SA President, and Catherine Cerulli, Director of the Susan B. Anthony Center. A majority of the task force is made up of undergraduate students across all class years and also includes Jeffrey Runner, Dean of the College, and Kirsten Buscetto, Student Engagement Administrator at the Susan B. Anthony Center. The Center is guiding the task force in their review of University, state, and federal sexual misconduct policies, processes, and guidelines. They will hold meetings to discuss the written policies, which will help guide their discussions, and will hear from University staff who directly work with the policies, such as the University’s Title IX Coordinator, Public Safety Chief, and Director of the Center for Student Conflict Management. This will help the task force get a better sense of how University policies are implemented, how state and federal policies impact campus policies, and determine how current University policies and procedures can be used more effectively. The task force also seeks to speak with students who want to share their experiences with the policies to gain further insight on how they are used in practice. Overall, the task force is working to determine if any improvements can be made to make the University of Rochester a safer place for students. After the group completes its review in early March 2018, they will share their recommendations for changes to the policies and procedures with Administration officials. Recommendations will address how the University can improve campus climate, sexual misconduct prevention, and the reporting process, as well as access to resources on and off campus.
Spring 2018: Susan B. Anthony Center Ambassadors Program
Beginning in Spring semester 2018, the Center will be offering the Susan B. Anthony Center Ambassadors (SBAC Ambassadors) Program to connect University students to the surrounding Rochester community through volunteer work at local non-profit service organizations. SBAC Ambassadors will help agencies with volunteer needs at one-day events or on short-term projects such as walks, dinners, and inventory organization. By supporting agencies in this capacity, students will benefit organizations by providing extra help that is needed to enable them to fulfill their goals as they conduct programming, raise funds, and serve clients in the local community.
A central goal of the program is to offer students a place to find volunteer opportunities in the Rochester community outside of traditional groups such as Greek life and Student Association clubs, and benefits students who are unable to commit to those groups. This enables students to be a part of a volunteer group that helps the community with less time constraints and offers them flexibility. The program is also great for UR students already involved in other groups who want to increase their volunteerism. Lastly, a key benefit of the program is it offers students the opportunity to be a part of a group that benefits the community while gaining community engagement and networking experience.
Individual students interested in volunteering can sign up through the Susan B. Anthony Center who will act as the liaison between community organizations and students to coordinate volunteer logistics. Volunteer opportunities will take place two to three times a semester at various Rochester area non-profit agencies. Transportation can be provided to any UR student who needs a ride to and from agency locations from campus. Any students interested in social justice, community building, and social service careers are highly encouraged to join this low commitment and fulfilling program.
Summer 2018: Generation Feminist (Gen F) Summer Fellowship
Generation Feminist (or Gen F) is a national two-week social justice summer fellowship for undergraduate students of all genders interested in social justice, human services, non-profit management, gender-based violence, and feminism(s). The program is a collaboration between the Susan B. Anthony Center at the University of Rochester and the Center for Educational Justice at the University of Redlands. It will be held on the University of Rochester campus and in the Rochester, NY area July 22 to August 4, 2018. Grounded in feminist history of the greater Rochester area and hands-on experience at a local non-profit service agency, this program provides undergraduates an opportunity to participate in leadership development, research and program evaluation, and experiential learning for social change. Using a feminist praxis approach to instruction, fellows will participate in self-exploration for social change. During the program, students will participate in workshops, historic site visits, and a service project that will focus on developing a greater awareness and deeper understanding of self, others, social issues, and the efficacy to make change.
Upon completion of the fellowship, participants will be able to:
- understand the history of feminism(s) and feminist organizations
- identify how feminist knowledge is constructed
- recognize how feminist values shape leadership
- apply research, advocacy, and leadership skills to affect social change
- construct a career plan for professional growth as a feminist leader for social change
Historic sites will include:
The Gage Home (Fayetteville, N.Y.); William H. Seward House (Auburn, N.Y.); The Harriet Tubman National Historical Park (Auburn, N.Y.); Women’s Rights National Historical Park & The Wesleyan Chapel (Seneca Falls, N.Y.); Elizabeth Cady Stanton House (Seneca Falls, N.Y.); The National Susan B. Anthony Museum & House (Rochester, N.Y.); The University of Rochester Archives (Rochester, N.Y.); and Mt. Hope Cemetery (Rochester, N.Y.).