Ignite hosts week long celebration for Women’s History Month


Courtesy of Ignite / Instagram

Ignite’s stand at last semester’s Involvement Fair.

In honor of Women’s History Month, Ignite will be hosting a week of activities from March 7-11 to educate campus about activism and celebrate women’s accomplishments. Events are open to all students. They begin on Monday with a movie night in Jones Auditorium and culminate with a Friday brunch in Mabee Ballrooms.

Ignite is a non-partisan feminist organization geared towards helping women and non-binary people find their political voices and feel empowered to take on leadership positions. The organization operates at a national level, with schools like St. Edward’s starting their own chapters to provide resources for campus communities. 

At St. Edward’s, Ignite has a central mission of promoting civic engagement and helping students advocate for issues they are passionate about. 

“We’re not only educating about activism, we’re also taking a week to recognize women’s accomplishments,” St. Edward’s Ignite President Nicole Clifford said. “While the work is never going to be done, it’s important to take time to relax and celebrate too.”

Clifford stressed her excitement for Wednesday’s “Navigating Political Leadership as Women” panel, hosted in Jones Auditorium from 6:30-8 p.m. 

The panel will feature three Austin women leaders: councilwoman Vanessa Fuentes, Alison Mohr Bolewar with the National Association of Social Workers and Ignite National’s Southeast Program Director Cydnei Drake. Each will talk about their own experiences navigating leadership roles as women. 

Rounding out the week will be Friday’s “Brunch with Women on the Hilltop,” featuring the university’s own professor Alex Barron as speaker. Professor Barron has been a full time women and gender studies professor since 2007 and said she is excited to have the chance to emphasize the importance of inclusivity this Women’s Month.

“In this moment, for an audience in college, what I’d want to say is: What do we mean when we say women?” Barron said. “I don’t want us only to think about white women, I want us to think about all women, and I don’t want us just to think about American women, I want us to think about women in the whole world, and who we count as women, and obviously this should include trans women too.” 

In addition to scheduled events, Ignite will be hosting a menstruation drive from the beginning of March until Friday, March 11. Period poverty, defined as insufficient access to menstruation products and education, is an often undiscussed issue in the healthcare world. 

“We’re trying to spread the word about how much of an issue [it] is,” Olivia Prior, vice president of the St. Edward’s Ignite chapter, said.“Menstrual products are just not accessible for lots of people, especially in low income communities.”

To address this crisis in our community, Ignite members have set up donation boxes for menstruation products. These boxes are located around campus and in most residence halls for ease of donation.