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Feminism Club concludes first year

Club discusses sexism at final meeting

Junior+Avia+Kaner-Roth+and+seniors+Amira+Stone+and+Freja+Olsen+discuss+sexism+within+the+school+community+May+18.+This+meeting+was+the+final+Feminism+Club+meeting+of+the+year.
Junior Avia Kaner-Roth and seniors Amira Stone and Freja Olsen discuss sexism within the school community May 18. This meeting was the final Feminism Club meeting of the year.

Junior Avia Kaner-Roth and seniors Amira Stone and Freja Olsen discuss sexism within the school community May 18. This meeting was the final Feminism Club meeting of the year.

Dani Orloff

Dani Orloff

Junior Avia Kaner-Roth and seniors Amira Stone and Freja Olsen discuss sexism within the school community May 18. This meeting was the final Feminism Club meeting of the year.

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As senior Feminism Club president Kirby Goodman reflects on the club’s first year, she said she felt the club succeeded in bringing awareness to feminism at Park, however, there remains work to be done.

“I think my main goal was just to create an outlet that I didn’t see, an outlet for feminism that I did not see in the school before,” Goodman said. “I think that’s definitely something we accomplished but something that we’ll continue to work for for next year.”

According to Feminism Club adviser Carley Kregness, the club began at the beginning of the school year.

“(Feminism Club) just started this year,” Kregness said. “They don’t have an exactly set schedule, but I’d say about two (club meetings) a month.”

Goodman said she hopes the club focuses on intersectionality and diversity within the club in the future.

“I think although we have a great number of people, (Feminism Club is) not really representative of our school,” Goodman said. “I think that definitely scares people off, like a group of upper middle class, affluent white students doesn’t represent feminism as a whole and it doesn’t represent our school.”

According to Goodman, at the final Feminism Club meeting on May 18, the members discussed sexism at Park and within the broader community.

“I got the idea because I heard about some incidents of slut shaming and sexism within the freshmen class, and I thought sexism in the school as a whole would be something good to talk about and share about people’s experiences and it went really well,” Goodman said.

Senior Feminism Club member Jesse Schwartz said the discussion provided an educational way to conclude the year.  

“I thought (the discussion) was really interesting because it brought up a lot of topics that I don’t really experience but it seemed like a really common experience for other people,” Schwartz said.

Kregness said this year, the club has done a variety of different activities at meetings.

“(The officers) plan different activities,” Kregness said. “Sometimes they present information about an issue related to women and they present some statistics and then they have discussion or debate about that issue. There have been a couple of different outside speakers and then sometimes they’ve had a couple of other students do things.”  

Goodman said she was pleased with the final meeting’s results and attendance.  

“I think it went really well. It was our last meeting of the year and so my last meeting running the club, because I am a senior and passing it along to some new people,” Goodman said. “I had a lot more people talking and speaking up and a lot more productive and better discussions than normal meetings, which was something I was happy with.”

According to Goodman, the club has grown and evolved this year, with close to 100 members in the Feminism Club Facebook group.

“I started the club this fall and then initially started it with a lot of my friends who also share values or ideas of feminism and would consider themselves feminists, and I started with that and then branched out and tried to recruit people of different grades and different backgrounds, so it’s definitely grown a lot,” Goodman said.

Schwartz said he believes the election outcome aided the club in it’s immediate growth this year.

“I think the circumstances really helped the club grow because we had our first meeting just shortly after the election, so our biggest meeting was our first meeting and everyone was wanting to talk,” Schwartz said. “That’s what really helped get the word out is everyone wanted a place to talk about it, and Feminism Club gave that opportunity. Most of the people who came to that first meeting have been to at least one more meeting since.”

According to Goodman, the new Feminism Club president for next year is junior Avia Kaner-Roth

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Feminism Club concludes first year