An initiative to bring K-State women together is gaining momentum.
Women of K-State, a group created by first lady Noel Schulz, is designed to coordinate the activities of women at the university and to help them advance.
Members of the group come from a variety of backgrounds and are connected by one thing -- their commitment to K-State.
"Women today have a number of roles both on and off campus. Sometimes balancing those is a challenge," said Noel Schulz. "Women of K-State is a group committed to talking about and resolving issues that affect the recruitment, retention and advancement of women at the university."
So far Women of K-State has had a number of networking events. Women who belong to the group have attended multiple athletic events, often with a behind the scenes tour of the facilities. More events connected to the arts and culture at K-State are in the works, and a brown bag lunch to address women's health issues was had today. The Women of K-State group also is working closely with the President's Commission on the Status of Women to advance women at the university.
Working groups to address a number of issues affecting women on campus are also forming, some of which are looking for co-leaders.
Groups include: caregiver; diversity other than race; dual careers; early-career; full-time staff taking courses; gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender, or GLBT; humanities; international; late-career; mid-career; military; non-greek; non-traditional students; off-campus organized; on-campus organized housing; on-line women students/faculty; retired/retiring; single; single mothers; tenure track; women mentors; women of color; women with disabilities; and women's groups already at K-State.
These groups will identify common themes and unique needs and examine the gaps in services or programs to be addressed. Schulz said she hopes to develop a strategic plan for the Women of K-State by summer 2010.
"We want to use the next three to five years to make K-State more of a destination of choice for women, from women students up through administrators," Schulz said. "Women of K-State is a tight-knit network of women committed not only to K-State, but each other."
In the future, Women of K-State also will engage alumnae, the community and friends of K-State in the cause.
Photos: The Women of K-State come from a wide variety of backgrounds; Group members high-five women's basketball players prior to a recent game.