Shawnee State University announced the hiring of Christina Baker Jones as the new coordinator of the Women’s and Gender Equity Center on September 26.
Jones completed her undergraduate degree at Shawnee State and has been employed as an English professor at the university since 2014. Jones will continue her work in the English Department alongside her duties as the Women’s and Gender Equity Center coordinator.
The Women’s and Gender Equity Center caters primarily to female students and students who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) along with other non-binary students and their needs.
Located in room 019 in Massie Hall, the Women’s and Gender Equity Center offers, academic support, professional guidance, relationship support, support for gender-related issues, self-image and identity support and support for parenting while being a student.
The center also offers resources and a comfortable space for lactating mothers.
“We’re also going to be coordinating events for women and the LGBTQ community here on campus,” Jones explained. “We want them to know there’s a safe space and we have events for them. We have a lot of non-traditional students, I think that we need support in the form of a space and resources for women who are coming back to school. Maybe they have been homemakers, or maybe they were in jobs where they didn’t make enough to support their family if they’re a single parent. Having a place to uplift them and support them is very important.”
As coordinator, Jones will oversee the center’s operations and help to create events that educate and promote topics related to women’s studies, feminism, LGBTQ advocacy and acceptance, and other topics. Jones also has plans to cooperate with and host existing student organizations and clubs, like the Gay Straight Student Alliance (GSSA) and the Women’s Initiative for Strength and Excellence (WISE) club.
“My goals are to create events that the students enjoy attending. I hope that we can have events that encourage people to be active in social issues that we’re dealing with and how to be productive in them and I hope we can have a lot of fun while doing it,” said Jones. “I was a non-traditional student myself, and I could not have made it without the support of this center. That’s why it’s so exciting that I now get to create the events and be the support and be able to give back in that way.”
For more information about the Women’s and Gender Equity Center, you can find them on Facebook at “Shawnee State University Women’s Gender and Equity Center,” or go online to www.shawnee.edu/womenscenter You can also call 74-351-3738.
Reach Ciara Conley at 740-981-6977, Facebook “Ciara Conley - Daily Times,” and Twitter @PDT_Ciara.