Celebrating International Women’s Day 2018

L-R Celebrating CVEN Women - Hanna Grzybowska, Sylvia Brohl, Mehreen Faruqi (host), Tamara Rouse, Courtney Bell, Mary O’Connell, Leila Bowe, Lucy Marshall, Pauline Manley, Deirdre Agnew Staff and students of UNSW Civil & Environmental Engineering celebrated International Women’s Day 2018 at NSW Parliament House, at an inspiring breakfast event hosted by CVEN alumnus  Dr Mehreen Faruqi Greens NSW MP   (MEngSc 1994 PHD 2000 UNSW)

Mehreen’s  IWD breakfasts have become renowned for an honest and radical discussion about gender and race with thought provoking speakers. This year we were addressed by two inspiring speakers, Indigenous poet Ali Cobby Eckermann and writer Saman Shad.

The fantastic and deadly Indigenous poet Ali Cobby Eckermann writes poignantly about being native in Australia. Ali was stolen from her family as an infant, and, she says "expressing grief, writing poetry and telling stories is her form of resistance". As she reminded the audience of our interconnectedness on this continent and planet,  ‘our trauma is your trauma.’  Saman Shad, freelance writer, playwright and novelist,  spoke of her courageous Pakistani grandmother who made sure all her daughters received the education she had been denied, and then in later life, went and signed herself up for one.

The breakfast raised $670.70 for Wagga Women’s Health Centre with the raffle of two sets of great books donated by Fremantle press.  CVEN external relations manager Dr Mary O’Connell was one of the two lucky winners!

Later in the day, academic, research and professional women staff members gathered at the School for the first of a series of informal monthly luncheons - to discuss ways in which we can practically support each other day-to-day in our School.  As convenor Associate Professor Lucy Marshall said, we envision discussing things like leadership styles/opportunities, skills acquisition, mentoring and inclusiveness, and to build a continuous, successful support-network for female staff!  

Further photos of the breakfast are here

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