Friday, June 6, 2014

Celebrate Good Times, Come On!

In Honor of All Who Have Been Involved in the WPSP 2014

All 12 Student Ambassadors, their last night together
Photo credit: Jane Falla
Jane Falla (left) and I talking about Communications (what else)
Photo credit: Kushangika Nawaratne
                                       Women in Public Service Project Graduated Delegates! Only a few...
                                                   Photo credit: Kushangika Nawaratne

Last night, we came together to celebrate each and every person who worked so hard to put on this year's Women in Public Service Project Institute. Speakers such as Rangita de Silva de Alwis, Director of the Global Women's Leadership Initiative and the Women in Public Service Project came to give her words of wisdom on entering the mentor program as delegates graduate from the WPSP. Farah Pandith,the first ever Special Representative to Muslim Communities for the United States Department of State also gave inspiring words to delegates who are returning home. Delegates were given their certificates and delegates also recognized their student ambassadors with gifts from their own countries. It was a real treat.

Last night held a mix of emotions, much like Delegate Jennifer Liang from India discussed in her speech. We were excited to listen to speakers, excited to eat food, excited to be done but also sad to have our delegates leave. Someone told me yesterday, "Hey you got a taste of what motherhood is really like: being on the clock 24/7." In a way, this statement holds some truth. But I must admit that many of these women served as my mentors. They taught me that despite one's geographic location and economic situation, a woman can rise up and make a change. We've done it and we will do it again and again and again. We will not stop. (This is not to exclude men or male feminists, such as Smith College's very own Professor of Government Greg White, who received many thanks and gifts at last night's ceremony.)

This post will be shorter than the others, but no less important. Yesterday's event was a prime example of the importance of reflecting on our lives and the work we've done. It is also important to recognize those who have worked hard who are not on the front lines but rather behind the scenes. Mount Holyoke's Coordinator New Student Orientation/ Project Assistant Kate Wasserman has worked tirelessly on this project for nearly two years. Many thanks to her for all of her work. Another shout out to Erin O'Connor Assistant Dean, Undergraduate Advising and First-Year Programs, College of Arts and Sciences at Simmons College. Erin and Kate have worked very hard on this Institute in helping putting it together. They have spent many nights staying up until 3 a.m., answering e-mails and helping student ambassadors solve mini and sometimes not-so-mini crises. Thank you both for helping to make this Institute the best and for helping us be the best team we could be.

Stay tuned for the last WPSP 2014 blog post...

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