Princeton recognizes 50 years of community and inclusion


As Princeton opened its doors to women and more underrepresented students in the late 1960s and early 1970s, there was a demand for spaces where these students could congregate to gain support. and strength. The Third World Center (now Carl A. Fields Center for Equality and Cultural Understanding) and the Women * s Center (now the Gender + Sexuality Resource Center) were both founded amid this massive social and cultural shift on the campus, providing a much needed community. and connection.

The 2021-2022 academic year marks the 50th anniversary of these revolutionary campus organizations. A series of conferences, programs and events are held throughout the year to honor their legacy of community, identity, collaboration and inclusion at Princeton.

“For five decades, the Third World Center / Carl A. Fields Center and the Women * s Center / Gender + Sexuality Resource Center have worked to create a sense of belonging and belonging for Princetonians whose presence was not included in the original vision of the University, ”said W. Rochelle Calhoun, vice president for campus life. “Fifty years later, we are proud to celebrate a legacy of inclusion that has helped Princeton live one of its most important values., manufacturing diversity and inclusion at the heart of Princeton’s educational mission. “

Over the years, women have played an important role in Princeton advocating for themselves and for changes in the curriculum and in student life. The original Women * s Center, founded in 1971, supported this legacy of activism and advocacy during the early decades of coeducation.

A new website launched this fall tells the story of these groups and recognizes alumni who fought for liberation and inclusion spaces on campus through their activism. It also includes a calendar of upcoming anniversary events, which will be updated until the end of the academic year.

Among the highlights are:

• Race, speech and university: 6 p.m., Wednesday January 19, Richardson Auditorium, Alexander Hall

A panel discussion with Nikole Hannah-Jones, Knight Chair in Race and Journalism at Howard University, reporter and author of “The 1619 Project”; Ulrich Baer, ​​University Professor of Comparative Literature, German and English at New York University and author of “What Snowflakes Get Right: Free Speech, Truth, and Equality on Campus”; and Stefan Bradley, professor of Black Studies and History at Amherst College and author of “Upending the Ivory Tower: Civil Rights, Black Power, and the Ivy League”. The event is co-sponsored by the Office of Religious Life, the Campus Conversation Series, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, the Graduate School, and the Office of the Winter Session and Engagement on the campus.

• Third World Center 50th Anniversary Meeting: 4 p.m., Saturday, February 19, Fields Center

As part of Princeton Alumni Day, alumni will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Third World Center with a reunion party. The event is co-sponsored by University Advancement.

• Women of Color Dinner: 6 p.m., Wednesday March 16, Fields Center

The Women of Color Dinner celebrates and honors the experiences of women of color at Princeton. Open to Princeton students, staff and faculty.

• Menstrual cup initiative: Ongoing throughout spring 2022

Through an initiative led by the Princeton Sustainability Office in conjunction with the Gender + Sexuality Resource Center, the Menstrual Products Task Force, University Health Services and other offices, free menstrual cups will be available for the Princeton community.

• Bad Fat Black Girl: Notes from a Trap Feminist: 6 p.m., Monday February 8, location to be confirmed

Sesali Bowen will talk about her feminist memoir “Bad Fat Black Girl: Notes from a Trap Feminist”. Bowen will also be available to sign copies of his book.

• Street History Month: March 3, 15, 25 and 31

Walking anecdotes where people will be asked about different women in history and facts about Princeton (in a format similar to the game show “Billy on the Street” which Netflix presented this fall).

• Black Women and the Church: The Secret Lives of Women in the Church: 6 p.m., Tuesday March 22, Fields Center

Author Deesha Philyaw, recipient of the 2021 PEN / Faulkner Award for Fiction and other accolades for her debut collection of short stories, “The Secret Lives of Church Ladies,” to join Reverend Theresa Thames, associate dean of the Office of Religious Life . , and Keri Day, associate professor of constructive theology and African-American religion at Princeton Theological Seminary, for a thought-provoking conversation about women in religion and experiences in the church.

Conference attendees make their way to Nassau Hall, where rainbow flags have been installed for the occasion

In 2021, the Women * s Center partnered with the LGBT Center to become the Gender + Sexuality Resource Center (GSRC). The GSRC remains committed to including and focusing on equity and racial justice, especially for people with marginalized identities, in order to create a sense of belonging and belonging for all Princetonians.

Additional events and activities will be announced as details become available. A Women in Academia panel featuring Princeton professors discussing the experience of being a woman in their field of study is scheduled for Wednesday, March 16. The time and place are to be determined.

A co-education alumni panel comprising female graduates from the first decade of co-education at Princeton is scheduled for late March. They will discuss their experiences on campus and their careers.

The Third World Center was founded in October 1971 and was originally located at 86 Olden Street (formerly Osborn Clubhouse). To more accurately reflect its mission, it was renamed Fields Center in 2002 in honor of Carl A. Fields, a former dean of Princeton who was the first African-American to hold such a high position at a school in the Ivy League.

The Fields Center has moved to 58 Prospect Ave. (the site of the old Elm Club) in 2009, offering larger space for social events and a more accessible and central location.

Today, the Fields Center hosts Heritage Months, Dialogue and Discussion, the Princeton University Mentorship Program, and the Carl Fields Fellows Peer Educator Program. Its welcoming space is used for socializing, study breaks, movie nights, galas, festivals and more.

“Spaces such as the Third World Center and the Carl A. Fields Center were created to meet the needs of marginalized students and those who thought and continue to think they have no place here in Princeton,” said said Tennille Haynes, director of Fields. Center. “The TWC was a home for students, a community they created to celebrate each other and to find joy, solace and to be themselves in a world that tried to define them. The TWC provided a sense of identity and contributed to many lasting friendships and fond memories. On this anniversary, we honor these spaces and the students who defended them.

A Latinx graduation event

The original Third World Center was renamed the Carl A. Fields Center for Equality and Cultural Understanding in 2002 to more accurately reflect its mission. Today, its expanded programming includes co-sponsorship of Princeton’s five cultural degrees, including the Latinx Graduation.

The Women’s Center was founded in 1971 by some of Princeton’s first undergraduate women. It was later renamed to the Women’s Center, using an asterisk instead of an apostrophe in its name to indicate that it was welcoming and open to everyone, regardless of gender or sexual orientation.

Building on a legacy of activism and advocacy, the Women’s Center has remained committed over the years to inclusive and intersectional feminism, and in centering equity and racial justice, especially for people. to marginalized identities.

In 2021, it partnered with the LGBT Center in Princeton to become the Gender + Sexuality Resource Center (GSRC). The expanded center serves women and students who identify with women and LGBTQIA + students. It also offers gender and sexuality programs and extracurricular experiences for the university community.

The recent expansion of the Women * s Center to become the Gender + Sexuality Resource Center builds on the Women * s Center’s 50-year historic legacy and prioritizes the changing needs of women, women, queer students and trans and members of the Princeton community. Said Kristopher Oliveira, Associate Dean for Diversity and Inclusion at Campus Life and Director of the Center. “Because of this history, generations of women at Princeton have sought and established gender equality on campus and around the world, a tradition and expectation that we continue today.”

The GSRC is located at the Frist Campus Center, where it maintains affinity spaces for women, female-identifying students, and LGBTQIA + students.


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