For the second consecutive year, the Feminist Association of Wheaton (FAW) is sharing the many ways student members spend their summers, in a weekly callout on social media they call #FAWFriday.
“#FAWFriday started last summer as a fun way to showcase not only the amazing work our members do off campus and outside the club but also the diverse range of interests of people within FAW,” said Alexandra Natale ’16. “We ask our members to send us information about what they’re doing, and a photo of them in their workplace if possible. All members of FAW are encouraged to share their summer plans with FAW, because our club is the amazing group it is because of all of them. This is our way of sharing that with the campus community.”
Already this summer, the group has highlighted Emily Mercurio ’16, who is spending her second summer as an intern with The Women’s Fund of Rhode Island, and Taylor Bardsley ’16, who is interning at The Center for Sexual Pleasure and Health in Pawtucket, R.I. Others to be mentioned soon are Kika Chatterjee ’18, who is working at an alternative music magazine, and Dani Dickinson ’17, who is working two internships, including one at On The Rise in Cambridge, Mass., where she is doing direct service work and advocacy on behalf of poor and homeless women.
Natale serves as the Feminist Association’s co-president along with Kate Gannon ’16, but she said the group is really a collaborative effort—executive board meetings are open to all members, and everyone is involved in planning events. The student-run club organizes campus events and programs that promote the discussion of feminist issues and the way feminism intersects with other topics and issues.
“Most important, we aim to create an environment for people to explore feminist issues and develop their feminist consciousness,” Natale said.
For the past several years, the group has kicked off each semester by asking the campus community to participate in the “I need feminism because …” photo project—a way to encourage people to think about how feminism impacts their lives. The Feminist Association also hosts at least two guest speakers twice a year; this past spring, it was Jos Truitt, executive director of the online community Feministing. And the group works to educate people during designated awareness months such as Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, when members host their annual candlelight vigil.