Mission

The Women’s Educational Center (WEC) at the University of Michigan-Flint works to:

  • Support UM-Flint women, including faculty, staff and students, as we fulfill our educational and career goals through referrals, scholarships, advising, advocacy and programming.
  • Raise awareness about social, political and economic issues that impact women in the local, national and global contexts.
  • Monitor the status of women on campus and advocate for practices and policies that promote equality.
  • Advocate for and support individuals of all genders, including gender non-conforming individuals.
  • Challenge attitudes, social constructs and social structures that promote inequality based on gender, race, sexual orientation, class, religion, national affiliation, language, ability, etc.

The WEC is open to all students, faculty and staff on campus, as well as to members of the surrounding community.

History

From its inception in 2001, the Women’s Educational Center has been committed to providing support to women returning to school, establishing several scholarships specifically designated for this population.  The WEC has also been instrumental in encouraging women returning to school to apply for the highly competitive Scholarship for Returning Women administered by the Center for the Education of Women at UM-Ann Arbor.  For 2006-2007, seven women from the Flint campus were granted a scholarship, the largest number of Flint campus women to be awarded in the history of the scholarship.  Additionally, the WEC continues to administer the Critical Difference Grant that was established with a gift from the University of Michigan Alumnae Council.  This grant provides up to $300 to returning students who find themselves in a financial crisis that may prevent them from completing the semester.   On average, the WEC awards about $10,000 annually.       

The Women’s Educational Center also focuses on issues relating to violence against women.  With a gift of $4,000 from a private donor in 2002, the WEC was able to purchase protective gear and began offering self-defense classes in collaboration with the Recreation Center.  In the fall of 2005, the WEC was awarded a $400,000 grant from the US Department of Justice to implement an awareness-raising campaign on campus about violence against women. The WEC has worked with Mott Community College, the YWCA of Greater Flint, the Flint Police Department and the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office to implement educational programs for the campus community and training sessions for Public Safety officers.

The 2005-2006 academic year was a time of transition for the Women’s Educational Center. With a new Director and Project Coordinator, emphasis was placed on expanding existing programs and creating new initiatives to attract a broad range of students, faculty, staff and community members.  The WEC has been successful in forming partnerships with several departments and student organizations on campus to implement programs such as scholarship workshops, Women’s History Month activities, a production of the Vagina Monologues, as well as Family Fun Night for students, faculty, and staff with children.

Advisory Board

The role of the Advisory Board is to strengthen the Women's Educational Center by serving as a resource for the Director and the Center.  The Advisory Board provides the Director with general direction consistent with the mission, while ensuring transparency and accountability, and protecting the Center's autonomy.  Advisory Board members include:

Jennifer Alvey, Faculty Representative

Peggy Kahn, Faculty Representative

Alicia Kent, Co-chair

Harmony Langford, Community Representative

Heather Laube, Co-chair

Ken Litwin, Faculty Representative

Tamara McKay, Staff Representative

Mona Munroe-Younis, Staff Representative

Margaret Murray - Wright, Faculty Representative

Shelley Spivack, Faulty Representative