Women are Ringleaders: Managing the Kyriarchy Circus

The UCSC Women's Center is hosting a leadership and communication conference Saturday, November 2, 2013. We want to provide tools, networking and community building opportunities for the current generation of student women leaders on campus. We hope to engage women from all backgrounds in conversations about the origins of, and ideas behind, women's leadership, and to encourage all women to envision themselves as leaders in their classrooms, student organizations, and communities. In cognizance of this purpose, we have invited several speakers who will share knowledge around communication and leadership styles and women's empowerment. About Our Theme, Some Thoughts and Definitions Our committee thought about everything women face educationally, professionally and personally. We try to create order in all these areas, and it can feel like stage managing a circus! We believe that women work and live at intersections of isms: racism, sexism, cisexism, ableism, ageism, etc. We speak about living in a patriarchal society--a system of society or government in which men hold the power and women are largely excluded from it (Wikipedia). Instead of gearing our conference towards tools used to combat patriarchy, we want participants to feel more comfortable recognizing and managing kyriarchy--"kyriarchy is best theorized as a complex pyramidal system of intersecting multiplicative social structures of superordination and subordination, of ruling and oppression"(Glossary, Wisdom Ways)--in various settings. The leader/stage manager of a circus has traditionally been called a Ringmaster. Of course, we're The Women's Center; "master" has no place in our vocabulary. We surfed to a definition of Ringleader: a person who leads others, especially in opposition to authority, law, etc.: a ringleader of revolutionary activities. (Dictionary.com) Yes! So there we have it: we want to give participants tools and support to challenge authority, unpack privileges and oppressions, reflect authentic leadership, and identify how their communications styles help them negotiate the University. Not a tall order! Conference Student Learning Outcomes By the end of November 2, The Women's Center hopes that attendees will experience some of the following learning outcomes:
  1. Intellectual growth: Understands the intersection of gender with race, class, sexual orientation and other identity formations; Employs critical thinking in problem solving
  2. Appreciating diversity: Seeks to understand one’s own multifaceted identity; Appropriately challenges stereotypes; Understands the impact of diversity on one’s own society
  3. Effective communication: Expresses oneself and influences others through writing, speaking, and/or artistic expression
  4. Realistic self-appraisal: Explores how societal expectations may inform one’s self-appraisal; Recognizes personal strengths and challenges
  5. Leadership development: Demonstrates initiative, vision, and perseverance; Comprehends group dynamics
  6. Personal and educational goals: Articulates and pursues goals and objectives; Uses goals to guide decisions
Call For Workshop Proposals Our conference's goal is that, through welcoming women-identified young adults to diverse women’s leadership community and communication styles, we can continue to foster our University's principles of community, help women find professional development opportunities and make the campus climate more inclusive all at the same time. We eagerly request proposals that cover one (or more) of the three poles of our big conference tent:
  • Leadership: Workshops or Panels about women and leadership styles (ie, True Colors and Gender); women student leaders' networks; tools to lead groups
  • Communication: Presentations about communicating across generations; working with different representations of power (speaking in class/dealing with conflict/family dynamics); and
  • Managing Kyriarchy: Workshops or Presentations discussing support/toolkits for women leaders; finding strength to counter/call out "isms" in the classroom/professional settings
Priority for workshops will go to UCSC undergraduate and graduate women-identified students. Workshops must be as interactive as possible, well-prepared, and will have slots of 75 minutes, including Question-and-Answer time. For each workshop submission, you’ll need to provide the title, description, which pole applies, and a minimum of two conference learning outcomes. Workshop descriptions (not including learning outcomes and keywords) and bios should be from 75 to 150 words in length. You will, if accepted, need to be available from 10am until 4pm on Saturday, November 2. Deadline for proposals: October 21, 2013.
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