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Invitation: Reactivating UIC’s Chancellor’s Committee on the Status of Women

Greetings, everyone!

Natalie Bennett, Director of the Women’s Resource and Leadership Center, and Jennie Brier, Director of Gender and Women’s Studies, serving as ex-officio members, invite you to be part of UIC's Chancellor's Committee on the Status of Women (CCSW).

Currently in hiatus, CCSW has been around for a long time. Founded in 1972 at the same time as the campus community was trying to start a Women’s Studies Program, CCSW was and is an advisory group to the Chancellor on issues facing women students, faculty, and staff. Over the last 50 years, CCSW has helped shape university policy and practice in multiple ways. Students, faculty and staff organizing in the 1970s called on UIC to build in five areas: 

  1. Childcare for faculty, staff and students
  2. Addressing women’s health in a comprehensive way
  3. Create a women’s center for the community to gather
  4. An academic program that educated students and hired women faculty
  5. A research center that focused on issues related to women’s lives.

Over time, all of these areas have been addressed, some at the behest of CCSW, some from other campus stakeholders, even while they have been subject to different kinds of attacks.

We understand that CCSW has always been an important space for articulating the critical issues faced by women on campus and for demonstrating leadership in coming up with solutions. The university staff who have led and carried the work forward over the years have given us a blueprint from which we can continue to work. We want to re-activate CCSW to gather our collective energies and see what we can make happen. We need your help and input to do so.

Already, we have identified childcare (especially for pregnant and parenting students) and reproductive health as two issues that require focused attention and advocacy. There are probably other issues that you think are important to address in a systematic fashion. Let us hear from you and together we can make a way forward.

Here is the ask:


We are hosting a lunch on Wednesday, October 18, 2023 so that we can reconnect with each other and learn from each other about our needs and aspirations.

Respond here to let us know:

  1. If you will be attending lunch
  2. Whether you are interested in being on the CCSW.

We need volunteers to be on the CCSW. We can talk about this as a group on the 18th, but if you know you have the capacity to join, please let us know. We hope to have faculty, staff, and students as volunteers, so please share the word with folks who you think might be interested in this committee.