Nearly 50 students were present to discuss the past and present of women’s issues at the Fourth Annual Women’s Forum.
The event was held Monday by the Cadena Cultural Center in collaboration with the Social Science Division who organized this forum for the purpose of creating support networks with faculty, management, staff and other students.
In the honor of the FC Centennial, keynote speaker Molly McClanahan, NOCCCD trustee reflected upon the history of women at Fullerton College throughout these 100 years.
“We need to know that there are women and even men who did courageous things so that the life that we’re living now is better than it was,” McClanahan said. “We need to look at them not as exceptions to history, but as examples.”
McClanahan highlighted some women in history who had courage to step out from the deadly conventional wisdom of the norm.
Group discussions revolved around sharing answers to the questions, “Who is a woman who inspires you?” and “What would you do if you had the courage?” Most of the students shared that they looked up to their mothers rather than to a specific figure in history.
Josh Korsmeier, psychology major admitted that the discussion helped him realize that other people go through a lot of challenges in life as well.
“My mother is my inspiration,” Korsmeier said. “She’s the one who always pushes me to exceed my limits.”
“When [McClanahan] said we need to be courageous and curious, I needed to hear that,” said Itzel Mercado, paralegal studies student. “That helps me carry on every single day.”
Mercado learned that people go through similar issues and problems, that is why sharing their feelings make them realize they have each other. She’s still looking for a mentor she can look up to guide her through her education.
This forum gave her a lot of the answers she’s been waiting to hear.
“Feminism for women is knowing who they are and reaching their full potential,” McClanahan said. “I want that for every woman.”
McClanahan looks up to her mother who obtained a college degree and her father who is a feminist. Her role model is Eleanor Roosevelt, who challenged people’s thinking and advocated for expanding the role of the women in the workplace.