University of Leicester marks International Women’s Day with a programme of free events

Posted by er134 at Mar 03, 2017 11:35 AM |
Women’s trail, film screenings, lectures and free cupcakes to mark global day of celebration to highlight struggle for gender equality

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 3 March 2017

The University of Leicester has organised a series of free events to mark International Women’s Day, which this year falls on Wednesday 8 March 2017.

From stories of barriers and challenges faced by women in academia, to discussions and film screenings, a whole host of events will take place across campus to mark the global day of celebration that highlights the struggle for gender equality, providing a forum for celebrating the role of women and their achievements and identifying challenges for the future.

There will also be an International Women’s Day trail showcasing 10 inspirational Leicester women throughout history as well as opportunities to win cupcakes and a branded hoodie simply by getting involved on social media.

The events will begin on Monday 6 March with an open lecture for staff, students and graduates entitled, ‘Glass Ceilings or Sticky Feet: Barriers to Gender Equality in Academia’ by Professor Louise Kenny of University College Cork.

On Tuesday 7 March, Leverhulme Artist in Residence Kajal Nisha Patel will be in conversation with Dr Melanie Kennedy from the University’s School of Media, Communication and Sociology to talk about her commissioned series of films, Four Women, Five Stories and discuss how art, craft, digital activism and storytelling can be used to foster critical discussion and social change.

From Wednesday 8 March to 15 March, the photos and biographies of 10 inspirational Leicester women spanning various topics and subjects, will feature on large banners around the campus to celebrate and highlight the important contributions made in their fields. These include bestselling author Sue Townsend, first Asian female Lord Mayor Manjula Sood and the first woman in the role of defence correspondent for The Guardian in 1963, Clare Hollingworth.

The University’s Residential and Catering Services will also be giving away cupcakes to the first 200 people to tweet selfies of themselves to @uniofleicester with the hashtag #BeBoldForChange. They can claim their free cupcake from the pop up gazebo in the Events Square outside the Fielding Johnson Building on Wednesday 8 March by presenting evidence of their tweet.

In addition, the first student to tweet a selfie of themselves with all 10 of the women on the banners will win a hoodie which can also be claimed from the pop up gazebo on the Events Square.

The University’s Department of Mathematics has organised four talks and an exhibition to celebrate the wide range of mathematical work done by women at the University.

A launch event, ‘Women of Mathematics Throughout Europe: A Gallery of Portraits’, will take place in the David Wilson Library Reading Room on Wednesday 8 March from 12-1pm, and the exhibition will run until Wednesday 15 March.

The talks will take place from 3-5pm on Wednesday 8 March in Belvoir Park Lounge in the Charles Wilson Building.

A panel event, ‘Resistance and Living Utopia: Women’s Liberation and Demographic Autonomy in Syrian Kurdistan’ on Wednesday 8 March will examine the key features of the demographic autonomy project in Rojava in Northern Syria that at its heart, a women’s revolution. The event will take place from 5.30-7.30pm in Attenborough Tower Lecture Theatre 1.

Students, staff and graduates of the University are invited to attend a special film screening of highly acclaimed Hidden Figures – a movie that dramatises the key roles that three female NASA employees played in landing a human on the moon, highlighting the forgotten, or sometimes entirely hidden, contributions of African American women to the space programme. The screening will take place at Odeon Leicester from 6.30pm on Thursday 9 March. Ticketing information can be found in the full events programme.

On Friday 24 March, the Leicester Diabetes Centre will host an event celebrating Leicester Women in Medicine from 1.30 - 4.30pm.

Dr Kate Williams, Deputy Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Equality and Diversity at the University of Leicester, said: “The theme of this year’s International Women’s Day is #BeBoldForChange and we are pleased that our events programme which has been organised by Colleges, departments, the Women’s Forum and individual staff and students, reflects an increasing awareness of intersectionality – the idea that we all have multiple identities – for example race, gender, sexuality identity and health, and how these will affect our wellbeing and status.

“All three Colleges are hosting events which include introductions by the respective College Heads, demonstrating the commitment by senior management to the International Women’s Day agenda. At the University of Leicester, our engagement with HeForShe, driven by our President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Paul Boyle, is an example of worldwide collaboration focusing collective agendas across 10 universities worldwide in our bid for gender equality. Sharing plans for IWD and amplifying the activities from each impact partner ensures reach across the globe.”

Notes to editors:

For more information contact Dr Kate Williams at:


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