CSU, Chico News

CSU, Chico to Offer Program Aiming to Increase the Number of Women Running for Office

Date: 02-15-2013

Joe Wills
Public Affairs
Kirsten Foster
CSU, Chico Student Representative
909-230-0633, krstnfstr@gmail.com

California State University, Chico was selected as one of the 39 campus sites across the United States and Jamaica to host Elect Her–Campus Women Win in spring 2013. This nationwide program is a collaboration between the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and Running Start that trains college women to run effective campaigns for student government and future office.

“Thanks in part to training programs like Elect Her, we’re seeing some progress in women’s leadership and representation. A record-breaking 154 women have received party nominations for U.S. House races this year,” said AAUW Executive Director Linda D. Hallman. “By encouraging and supporting more women to be leaders on their own campuses, we are helping to set them on a path for success in leadership roles after college.”

CSU, Chico will be hosting its local training for Elect Her on March 9, 2013, from 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Bell Memorial Union auditorium. To register, go to www.tinyurl.com/csuc-electher. For more information, like us on Facebook at Elect Her- CSU Chico. CSU, Chico student coordinator Kirsten Foster, AAUW representative Katie Shorey and Multicultural and Gender Studies lecturer Molly M. Heck comprise the core team putting on this event to increase women’s representation in elected positions at CSU, Chico, statewide, and on a nationally.

“We are thrilled to launch our fourth year of Elect Her trainings,” said Running Start Executive Director Jessica Grounds. “We’ve added more sites each year, and I am impressed by the college women leaders we meet around the country. Running Start and AAUW are certain that these women will leave inspired to lead on their campuses and beyond.”

“I believe it is important that more women are encouraged to run for political office, whether that be at the university, local, state or federal level,” said Elise Porter, an intern at the Gender and Sexual Equity Center at CSU, Chico. “Right now women only make up 18 percent of Congress, and since women make up more than 50 percent of the population, we need to have equal representation in the public and private sector.”

Since 2008, AAUW and Running Start have collaborated to encourage college women to run for student government. Building on those successes, the organizations initiated the Elect Her–Campus Women Win training program in 2010, and the effort is already showing results for college women. The full list of participating schools is available on the AAUW website.

AAUW also co-sponsors the annual National Conference for College Women Student Leaders. The conference, which draws more than 600 attendees, will celebrate its 28th year May 30 – June 1, 2013, at the University of Maryland, College Park, and will feature an Elect Her–Campus Women Win workshop with student liaisons from the 39 sites.

Running Start, which is dedicated to educating and inspiring young women to participate in politics and run for office, works directly with high school, college, and young professional women to encourage them to think of themselves as political leaders.