Category Archives: News & Views

Sam Walther; IWL’s New Program Coordinator

The Institute for Women’s Leadership is happy to announce our newest addition to our staff: Graduate Assistant Sam Walther. Originally from Annapolis, Maryland, Sam is a recent graduate of Hamilton College in Clinton, New York. A Government major, she primarily focused on authoritarian regimes and human rights. She has decided to continue her studies in the Master of Science in Counterterrorism program here at Nichols. Sam spent time abroad twice during her undergraduate years, first in London and Paris, and then in Sweden.

Sam StockholmStockholm, Sweden

During her time in Sweden, Sam conducted primary research comparing the Swedish Criminal Justice System to that of the United States. She spent time touring prisons in both countries and conducted several in-person interviews including those with corrections officers, Members of Swedish Parliament, police officers, judges, and prisoners. She continued her research throughout her senior year by conducting a second study titled “The Treatment of the Mentally Ill in the Criminal Justice System: Survey of the Corrections and Forensic Environments in Oneida County, New York,” which is to be published and distributed this fall.

Sam readily explains that Hamilton elucidated her true passion for writing and human rights work and was awarded the 2017 Raphael Lemkim Essay Prize on the Practice of Genocide. Her other research works have included:

– “Political Rhetoric and Hate Crimes: Civil Liberties Violations of Muslim- Americans,” which was her senior thesis.

– “Sweden’s Criminal Justice System and Mass Immigration

– “The Nuremberg and Subsequent Doctors Trials: Coining Genocide and the Institutionalization of Human Rights”

-“2011 Arab Spring: Why Syria Failed in Comparison to its Inspirations, Tunisia and Egypt”

-“China on R2P: Creating a New Mediator Role in International Relations.”

Her dream is to one day serve as an Ambassador for the United States or for the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

In addition to her studies, Sam was a four-year member of the Women’s Ice Hockey team at Hamilton. In addition to being the first two-time All American in school history, she was also named an ACHA Academic All-American for the 2017-18 school year, which is given to those varsity athletes who attain a 3.60 GPA or above and participate in over 40% of their schools games. Sam was also a 2017-18 finalist or the Laura Hurd NCAA Division III Player of the Year Award as well as a finalist for the 2017-18 NCAA Woman of the Year Award. In addition to being a 3x All-NESCAC member and 5x NESCAC Player of the Week and achieving 13 records during her time at Hamilton, Sam received both the 2018 Jack B. Riffle Award for Best Senior Athlete, as well as the 2018 Utica Kiwanis Award for Best Scholar-Athlete.

Sam hockey record

Sam’s goals while working at the IWL include beginning to bridge the gap between athletics and the IWL to increase involvement and encourage athletes, both male and female, as well as coaches, to utilize the IWL as a resource. Further, Sam’s hope is to help students at Nichols face daily challenges such as confidence, emotional health and control, as well as being able to stand up for what they believe in. She believes that women’s rights are human rights and that we must take strides everyday towards equality. She hopes to encourage each student to be brave, confident, and proud of their identity and the role they can each play in creating change. “You know sometimes all you need is twenty seconds of insane courage, literally twenty seconds of embarrassing bravery and I promise you, something good will come of it.” – We Bought A Zoo.

Sam also serves as one of the assistant coaches for the Nichols Women’s Ice Hockey Team, and is continuing her own hockey career, playing professionally for the Connecticut Whale of the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL).

Sam Hockey

When not in the IWL or at the rink, Sam enjoys dark room and black and white photography, running, and anytime spent at the beach. Oh- and loves her German Shepherd puppy, Shadow, more than anything!

Sam dogSam dog

Awareness Week 2018

Awareness Week of 2018 was a huge success for the IWL in raising awareness for women’s issues. Events were hosted throughout the week around campus to highlight and bring awareness to issues such as body positivity, the gender wage gap, stereotyping, and gender equality. The participation of the Nichols College community enabled the IWL to raise over $500, of which all proceeds were donated to Girls Inc. of Worcester. This would not have been possible without the assistance of the IWL Panelists in putting on these events or the Nichols students, staff, and faculty in participating.

Bale Sale CroppedAwareness Week is based around National Equal Pay Day, which occurred on April 10th, symbolic of how far into the year women must work in order to earn what men did in the previous year. The IWL hosted its Equal Pay Day Bake Sale as part of Troublesome Tuesday where men paid $1 while women paid 75 cents to underscore the impact of the wage gap.

FlowersThe week began with Flowers for a Cause, part of Movement Monday. Flowers with motivational messages were distributed to students, who were encouraged to pass them on to someone in need.

Four social media campaigns occurred throughout the week. The first of which was the #LoveYourSelfie Campaign, part of Movement Monday. Nichols students were asked to write what they like about themselves on a whiteboard and pose with the Polaroid instaprint.
Lvoe Your Selfie 1
Nichols students were asked to confront the offensive things they hear on a daily basis by writing a racist or sexist label they face and redefine themselves with the #InTheirOwnWords Campaign, part of Wednesday Words.
Wednesday Words 1Wednesday Words
Through the #TearingItUp Campaign, Nichols students were asked to tear up words and phrases that perpetuate stereotypes, for Thursday Thoughts. This campaign focused on generating awareness of the stereotypes that exist, fostering a commitment to not use the language, and facilitating a conversation about why.
Thursday Thoughts 1Tearing It Up Campaign
Friday Feels

For Friday Feels, Nichols students were asked to pose with a board on which they wrote the name of a female who influenced them in order to heighten their awareness of how the gender gap affects those they love through the #WhoInfluencedYou Campaign.

Pub Night 2As the closer to Awareness Week, the IWL hosted its first annual (Un)Happy Hour Pub Night where men paid a $1 cover while women paid 75 cents to illustrate the gender wage gap. The night included live entertainment, hors d’oeuvres, a raffle, silent auction, and IWL giveaways. Students were asked to wear black to stand in solidarity with our sisters and say #timesup on the imbalance of power across all industries.

The IWL is looking forward to another successful Awareness Week next year. Keep an eye out for our next post, recapping the semester from our Student Advisory Panel’s point of view!

Spring 2018 Schedule

We hope you will join us at our events this semester!
Email reminders with details will be sent to students prior to each event. Any questions, please email iwl@nichols.edu.

Capture

January: Motivation and Leadership Month

  • IWL Open House ~ Thursday January 18, 2018 1:00-2:30 pm
    Campus invite to stop by the IWL for refreshments and to learn more about the IWL’s activities and plans.
  • Movie Night: The Post ~ Tuesday January 23, 2018 3:30-6:30 pm
    Student are welcome to join the IWL on a trip Blackstone Valley Cinema de Lux tin Millbury to see The Post starting Meryl Streep, keynote speaker at the Massachusetts Conference for Women. Katharine Graham (Streep) is the first female publisher of a major American newspaper — The Washington Post. With help from editor Ben Bradlee (Tom Hanks), Graham races to catch up with The New York Times to expose a massive cover-up of government secrets that spans three decades and four U.S. presidents. Together, they must overcome their differences as they risk their careers—and very freedom—to help bring long-buried truths to light.
  • Student Lean In Circle ~ Wednesday January 24, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    First monthly Women of Nichols Lean In Circle of the semester offering motivation, learning, support and connections with other female students in a supportive, open environment. Topic: Reset Your Mindset; Activity: DIY Heat Pack
  • IWL Student Advisory Panel Meeting ~ Thursday January 25, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    Monthly meeting for the 2017-2018 panel to plan.
  • Conversation Project Breakfast ~ Monday January 29, 2018 10:30-11:30 am
    Conversation Projects are gatherings where students have the opportunity to meet and network with visiting professionals in a comfortable, conversational setting. Guest: Brittany Wagner, motivation expert, Last Chance U star. In collaboration with the Center for Student Involvement.
  • Conversation Project Lunch ~ Monday January 29, 2018 1:15-2:30 pm
    Guest: Pam Borton, leadership coach, D1 basketball coach. In collaboration with the SMGT Department.
          Lead In Session for Staff/Faculty ~ 12:00-1:15 pm
          Conversation Project (in Davis 205/207) ~ 1:30-2:15 pm

 February: Black History Month

  • Staff/Faculty Lean In Circle ~ Monday February 5, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Monthly gathering for learning, connection, and motivation with female staff and faculty in a supportive, open environment.
  • Goal Setting Workshop ~ Tuesday February 6, 2018 9:30-10:30 pm
    Nichols student volunteers mentor a group of middle school age students on goal setting for their future. Held at Grace Academy in Hartford, CT.
  • Awareness Event ~ Friday February 9, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Opening of the Winter Olympics. Highlighting the difference between men’s and women’s events.
  • Awareness Event ~ Wednesday February 14, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Why you don’t have a date on Valentine’s Day: highlighting offensive pick-up lines used toward women and raising awareness of how to avoid using them.
  • Student Lean In Circle ~ Thursday February 15, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Topic: Group Think-tank; Activity: Bring a male counterpart to discuss how poverty affects men and women differently.
  • Awareness Event ~ Wednesday February 21, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Highlighting the wage gap that exists for black women. As a part of Black History Month.
  • Social Justice Series ~ Thursday February 22, 2018 3:45 pm
    The Social Justice Speaker Series aims to explore how wealth, opportunity, and privilege are distributed in society and how ethnic origin, gender, economic status, race, religion, etc., can limit or advance individuals and groups. Speaker: Christina Bain, Director of the Initiative on Human Trafficking and Modern Day Slavery at Babson College. She studies the role of businesses to combat human trafficking; the growth of the black market trade in human organs, and its relationship to human trafficking; and the impact of climate change on trafficking. In collaboration with the Fisher Institute and CJM Department
  • IWL Student Advisory Panel Meeting ~ Thursday February 22, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    Monthly meeting for the 2017-2018 panel to plan.
  • Ann Taylor Loft Event ~ Sunday February 25, 2018 5:30-8:30 pm
    A fashion show for students to understand and find clothing to fit the business casual model. Put on by Ann Taylor Loft of Millbury.
  • Conversation Project Dinner ~ Monday February 26,  2018 5:00-7:00 pm
    Guest: Tori Sadler. CEO & designer of TORI NICOLE® hand bags. Via Skype.
  • Film Series ~ Wednesday February 28, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    A film will be shown in the IWL Suite. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.

March: Women’s History Month

  • Staff/Faculty Lean In Circle ~ Monday March 5, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Monthly gathering for learning, connection, and motivation with female staff and faculty in a supportive, open environment.
  • Women’s Overnight Dinner ~ Monday March 5, 2018 5:00-6:00 pm
    Prospective accepted female students are invited to dinner in the IWL Suite during their overnight stay on campus to learn about the added resource available to them.
  • Student Lean In Circle ~ Wednesday March 7, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Topic: Sexual Harassment; Activity: Homemade Hand Scrub
  • College Connection Mentoring Program/Part II ~ Thursday March 8, 2018 8:30-2:00 pm
    Nichols student volunteers spend the day mentoring a group of high school juniors on: the college search and application process, as well as transitioning from high school to college.
  • Goal Setting Workshop ~ Tuesday March 13, 2018 5:00-6:00 pm
    Nichols student volunteers spend the day mentoring a group of high school age students on setting goals for their future.
  • Empowering Women in Business Conference ~ Thursday March 22, 2018 12:30-6:00 pm
    Nichols presents its 8th annual conference, welcoming professional women in the region for networking, skill building, and inspiration. Visit empowering-women.biz for information. Registration required.
  • Campus Leadership Summit ~ Sunday March 25, 2018 1:00-6:00 pm
    Planned in conjunction with other departments on campus, students apply to be part of a day of professional development and brainstorming. Designed to bring together student leaders from a variety of areas on campus.
  • Muslim Women’s Human Rights ~ Monday March 26, 2018
    Speaker: Kelly Shannon. Ms. Shannon will discuss her new book, U.S. Foreign Policy and Muslim Women’s Human Rights. Her talk will address contemporary U.S. relations with the Muslim world, particularly how Americans gradually identified women’s human rights in Islamic societies as vitally important to U.S. foreign policy. This lecture is co-sponsored with the Fisher Institute and is part of the celebration of Women’s History Month.
          Conversation Project ~ 1:30-2:15 pm
          Presentation ~ 3:45 pm
          Conversation Project (at the Black Tavern) ~ 5:00-7:00 pm
  • Sexual Harassment Fishbowl ~ Wednesday March 28, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    Hosted by professors Mike Neagle of the History Department and Boyd Brown of the Criminal Justice Department. How far have we come or not come as a society related to the positions of power and sexual exploitation dynamic? What are the implications for the current society-wide heightened awareness of systemic abuse among industry leaders?
  • IWL Student Advisory Panel Meeting ~ Thursday March 29, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    Monthly meeting for the 2017-2018 panel to plan.
  • Conversation Project Dinner ~ TBD 5:00-7:00 pm
    Guest: Shahira Gmira. Head of the Newton Mosharafa Fund—a £50 million, seven-year science and innovation partnership between the UK and Egypt—at the British Embassy in Cairo, Egypt. The Fund brings together the British and Egyptian scientific research and innovation sectors to find joint solutions to the challenges facing Egypt in economic development and social welfare. Via Skype.

April: Wage Gap Awareness Month

  • Negotiation Workshop ~ Tuesday April 3, 2018 4:00-7:00 pm
    In partnership with the American Association of University Women, female Nichols students will be trained in assertive, respectful salary negotiation techniques, in an effort to help decrease the gender wage gap. Dinner will be provided. Limited seats; registration required.
  • Awareness Event ~ Thursday April 5, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Highlighting sexual assault nationally. Wear denim to show your support for survivors.
  • Conversation Project (at the President’s House) ~ Thursday April 5, 2018 5:00-7:00 pm
    Guest: Nichols College President Susan West Engelkemeyer.
  • Awareness Week ~ April 9-13, 2018
    Events highlighting women’s issues focusing on the gender wage gap and demand equal pay for equal work for Women. Based around National Equal Pay Day on April 10th. National Equal Pay Day is symbolic of how far into the year women must work to in order to earn what men did in the previous year. See next page for more details.
             Movement Monday
             Troublesome Tuesday
             Wednesday Words
             Thursday Thoughts
             Friday Feels
  • International Speaker Series I ~ Monday April 9, 2018
    Speaker: Selma Inocência. A journalist who received two honorary mentions under the National Press Award, a national journalism award, and won two international awards from CNN (2011 and 2013). Ms. Inocência’s career interests include international civilian peacekeeping. She is an experienced TV anchor/producer and journalist. Selma has been the Media Specialist at the USAID Mozambique Media Strengthening Program, training more than 50 universities’ students to be better journalists. In collaboration with Professor Marcus Goncalves, the IBUS, HIST, HUM, and BCOM departments and the Fisher Institute.
          Conversation Project ~ 1:30-2:15 pm
          Presentation ~ 3:45 pm
  • Staff/Faculty Lean In Circle ~ Monday April 16, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Monthly gathering for learning, connection, and motivation with female staff and faculty in a supportive, open environment. Male faculty are welcome.
  • Student Lean In Circle ~ Wednesday April 18, 2018 1:30-2:15 pm
    Topic: Feminism; Activity: Painted Glassware
  • Film Series ~ Wednesday April 25, 2018 4:30-6:00 pm
    A film will be shown in the IWL Suite. Light refreshments and snacks will be served.
  • IWL Student Advisory Panel Meeting ~ Thursday April 26, 2017 4:30-6:00 pm
    Monthly meeting for the 2017-2018 panel to plan.
  • Farewell to the Class of 2018 ~ Friday April 27, 2018 5:00-7:00 pm
    Faculty and staff are invited to bring a guest of the senior class for a cocktails and hors d’oeuvres reception.

Awareness Week Events

  • Survey
    Questions about women in business, the pay gap, and diversity in general and will be distributed campus wide Monday and Friday. It will be anonymous and assess our overall awareness as a community before and after awareness week. Generated by the IWL Advisory Panel.
  • Chalk the Sidewalk
    The kick-start to awareness week, keep an eye out for statistics around campus highlighting women.

Movement Monday

  • Flowers for a Cause
    Flowers with motivational messages will be distributed through the student population. Feel free to pass on the message to someone in need.
  • Love Your Selfie Campaign ~ Nicon Plaza & Fels Main Street 11:00 am-2:00 pm
    Nichols students will be asked to write what they like about themselves on a white board and pose with it for a Polaroid instaprint. Participants will receive Panera and IWL giveaways.

Troublesome Tuesday

National Equal Pay Day, symbolic of how far into the year women must work to in order to earn what men did in the previous year. Wear red to symbolize how far women and minorities are “in the red” with their pay.

  • Equal Pay Day Bake Sale ~ Nicon Plaza & Fels Main Street 11:00 am-2:00 pm
    A nationwide awareness event where men will pay $1 while women will pay 75 cents – to underscore the impact of the gender wage gap. All proceeds will be donated to Girls Inc. of Worcester.

Wednesday Words

  • In Their Own Words Campaign ~ Nicon Plaza & Fels Main Street 11:00 am-2:00 pm
    Women of Nichols will be asked to confront the offensive things they hear on a daily basis by posing with printed posters during this public event. They will write a racist or sexist label they face and redefine themselves in their own words. Participants will receive Dunkin Donuts and IWL giveaways.

Thursday Thoughts

  • Tearing it Up Campaign ~ Nicon Plaza & Fels Main Street 11:00 am-2:00 pm
    Nichols students will be asked to be photographed tearing up words and phrases that perpetuate stereotypes. This campaign focuses on generating awareness of the stereotypes that exist, fostering a commitment to not use the language, and facilitating a conversation about why. (Student Station & Panelist visits to Faculty and Staff)
  • Support the Softball Team ~ 3:00 pm
    Come and support the women of the Nichols College Softball Team. The first 25 attendees will receive IWL giveaways.

Friday Feels

  • Who Influences You Campaign ~ Nicon Plaza & Fels Main Street 11:00 am-2:00 pm
    Men of Nichols will be asked to pose with a board on which they write the name of a female who influenced them in order to heighten their awareness of how the gender gap affects those they love. Participants will receive Dippin Donuts and IWL giveaways.
  • (Un) happy Hour Pub Night ~ 8:30-11:30 pm on the Copper Quad
    A nationwide awareness event where men will pay a $1 cover while women will pay 75 cents – to underscore the impact of the gender wage gap. All proceeds will be donated to Girls Inc. of Worcester. Entertainment, light hors d’oeuvres, and IWL giveaways. Wear black to stand in solidarity with our sisters to say #timesup on the imbalance of power across all industries. For more information @TIMESUPNOW, @timesupnow.