AAUW: More than a college club

Shelby Adkins, Reporter

If you are looking for a way to empower and achieve equal rights for women, then The American Association of American Women is the student organization for you.

AAUW is a national organization that has been around since the 1800s.

“AAUW has been on campus for many years as a way to help young women think about women’s rights and pay equity,” Director of Academic Support Services Debra McArthur said.

Parkville is no stranger to the AAUW, as it has had an active branch for more than 80 years. Some faculty members, such as McArthur, are members of the national organization.

McArthur has been a member of the AAUW for nine years and is currently the president of the Parkville branch. She is also an administrator for the student chapter of AAUW at Park University and believes that college women have a strong need for organizations like AAUW.

“I think that many times women aren’t even aware of some of the issues that they face because I think that this generation sees women’s rights a little differently than my generation,” McArthur said. “College women are of an age to vote, they are of an age where they could be politically active, and they need to be. And I think AAUW encourages that.”

AAUW has had a strong following in the past, and next year McArthur is looking for more members to join the student organization.

“I’m going to be reaching out to our CREW membership and trying to post more on there to let students know that this is a thing,” McArthur said.

Furthermore, McArthur is considering using a digital platform to conduct meetings, to work with more people’s schedules, and to connect with more students.

“If we decide to do meetings on Wednesday, and there are some students that aren’t on campus that day of the week, they can still join us by using their devices,” McArthur said. “They can still have a voice and still be involved in activities of the group even though they aren’t physically present.”

Being a part of this student organization is a great way to discover how to help the women of today, as well as the women of tomorrow.

“So, as they leave college, we hope they will continue to be members of the national organization,” McArthur said. “But that they will also learn ways while they are in college that they can support those efforts either through political activism, or through organizing events in their community.”