WCW Blog

The Women Change Worlds blog of the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW) encourages WCW scholars and colleagues to respond to current news and events; disseminate research findings, expertise, and commentary; and both pose and answer questions about issues that put women's perspectives and concerns at the center of the discussion.
Suicide Prevention: The Depression Link National Suicide Prevention Week (September 8-14) is a time to both raise awareness of suicide as a national public health issue, and to think critically about how suicide can be prevented. In the United States, suicide is the second leading cause of death among adolescents (Hoyert & Xu, 2012), and, in 2011, nearly 16 percent of adolescents in the...
Part II: Social Scientific Perspectives on Making Change in America Yesterday, in my reflections on the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, I blogged about how the issue of pursuing change can be viewed through a social science lens--not just through a ...
Reflects on the March on Washington: Social Scientific Perspectives on Making Change in America Yesterday I attended the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington with two members of the WCW staff. We had been in Washington, D.C., for a series of meetings--indeed, we had just met with a liaison to the White House Council on Women and Girls earlier...
Celebrating Women’s Equality Day August 26, Women’s Equality Day, always raises mixed feelings for me. I can join in the spirit of celebration over how far women have come from the days when my graduate school professor announced in class that if the political science ...
Is Grit Another Name for Resiliency? Over the past few months, in my role as the Chair of the American Camp Association’s (ACA) Task Force on Non-Cognitive Skills, I have been immersed in the research and popular literature on what journalist-author Paul Tough calls &...
Opt-Out Revolution 2013 Last Sunday’s New York Times Magazine ...
What can a good-looking, white woman with a Smith College degree and middle-class upbringing teach us about prisons in America? When she was in her 20s, Piper Kerman was persuaded by her lover Norma--who was involved in an international drug ring--to carry a suitcase of drug trafficking money into the U.S. She...
Race & Justice in America Work at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW) is undertaken with the goals of informing change makers, amending attitudes, and shaping a more just world for women, girls, their communities, and families. The interdisciplinary team of scholars, administrators, and advisors who ensure that WCW’s mission moves forward is informed by their own research and...
“Having it all,” “Lean in,” or “Work-life Balance”-- Asking the right questions Sheryl Sandberg’s recent book, Lean In, created a media frenzy. Before that, Ann-Marie Slaughter’s 2012 article in The Atlantic, “Why...
Marriage: Love, Benefits, ... Yesterday the Supreme Court ruled that denying recognition and benefits to same-sex couples is unconstitutional. Gay and lesbian couples who are legally married (they are able to do so in 12 ...
Unaccompanied Homeless Youth in Massachusetts, what does this mean? This blog post, by Kathy Schleyer, was entered in the Wheelock College Policy Connection 2013 Student Blogger Contest and earned second place. The original post can be found on the Wheelock College Blog. It ...
Children's Rights Are Human Rights The United Nations General Assembly proclaimed June 4th as International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression(resolution ES-7/8)in...
Women, Employment & Health This commentary appears in the Research & Action Report, Spring/Summer 2013 Volume 34 • Number 2 (forthcoming), published by the Wellesley Centers for Women. When we think about employment and health, we often think about high risk jobs and occupational safety. The recent deaths of first responders in Massachusetts and Texas highlight these ...
Interdependency and Mental Health May is National Mental Health Awareness month, a fitting time to be mindful of the suffering caused by mental illness. Even though I am a psychiatrist, working daily with people diagnosed with mental illness, I am stunned by the statistics on the incidence of mental illness. According to the National Institute of Mental Health in any 12 month period, 26...
The Time Is Now for Women and Girls This article was originally published May 10, 2013 on Huffington Post by Alex Sanger, chair of the ...
The Best of What We Bring through Sports Sometimes sports brings out the worst in us. Players taunt. Parents criticize. Coaches belittle. And at other times it is within the context of sports that a spotlight is shined on the best of the human spirit. There are many things that I love about sports participation and spectating. I am easily entranced by the last second shot, sudden death, ...
What Is A Woman Worth? Are you paid what you’re worth? How much do you earn? Is your paycheck fair? These are the kinds of questions we don’t talk about in public, or even with co-workers. We might broach them with close friends or family, but many Americans don’t like to talk about whether our paychecks are fair. However, when women earn 77 cents for every dollar a ...
Happy Birthday Maya Angelou! This blog was originally published on the National Center for Civil and Human Rights Voices of our Community Blog. We may remember today many ways, but one of the happiest has to be by wishing an ebullient “Happy Birthday!” to one of ...
It's a SNAP: Living on Four Bucks a Day This blog appeared originally on YWCatalyst blog. Author Peter Biro is the husband of Nova Biro, a ...
Lean In to Social Change One of the things I like best about Sheryl Sandberg’s new book, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead, is something she says on page 9. Addressing the debate about whether the key to increasing women’s ...
The Birds, the Bees, and the Stomach Butterflies March is Talk with Your Teen about Sex Month. Why talk about sex with our kids? In her recent talk at Wellesley College, Cecile Richards, President of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, reminded us that parents are the most important source of sex education ...
On International Women’s Day: How Do We Get Girls in School Safely? This blog post originally appeared in the Education for All Blog of the Global Partnership for Education; by Nora Fyles, Head of...
Is A Global Consensus Emerging on Women’s Issues? As we hurtle towards the conclusion of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in 2015, some of which have more or less been met and others of which remain very far from target, there seems, at least based on the most recent United Nations on ...
Missive from the 57th UN CSW It’s International Women’s Day, and I’ve spent the last week attending the annual meetings of the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) – for the first time. As a starry-eyed youngster who used to collect pennies for UNICEF ...
In quest for equity, sports and combat are sisters How perfect that National Girls and Women in Sports Day (who invented this cumbersome name?) arrives as the military prepares to lift it’s ban on women serving in combat. The barriers that women have faced to such service sound ...
Mentoring, Sports, & Girl Athletes January was National Mentoring Month, as President Barack Obama recognized on January 3. Next week we celebrate National Girls and Women’s and Sports Day. The ...
Women's Review of Books--Now We Are Thirty Reprinted from the January/ February 2013 Women's Review of Books. Longevity, I tell people who compliment me on my age (sixty) and youthful (apparently) looks, is not a sign of virtue. In my case, it’s simply dumb luck: a combination of good genes, a middle-class upbringing, and a job that provides me with health insurance. Yet for a ...
Mentoring & Girls of Color Happy National Mentoring Month! Since 2002, each January has been a time to give mentoring a boost nationwide through the recruitment of individuals and organizations. The documentary, It’s Our Time: The Empathy Gap for Girls of Color, by Wellesley Centers...
Ending Violence – A New Year’s Challenge I can’t remember a time when our holiday season was more marred by violence than the one that just passed. Not only did the Sandy Hook Elementary mass shootings take place just days before Christmas...
Human Rights Month: Women Prisoners Massachusetts Corrections guidelines permit shackling women prisoners by one foot during birth and according to testimony given to the Joint Committee on the Judiciary in September 2011, women have left the hospital after giving birth shackled at their waist, arms, and legs. Such practices have been deemed a violation of the United Nations Convention against Torture, ...
Helping Children Deal with Traumatic Events A message from Open Circle, the elementary school social emotional learning (SEL) program at the Wellesley Centers for Women: "In light of the recent shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, we are writing to share some resources that school communities might ...
Fortune 500s--Where Are the Women? Five years ago, my colleagues Vicki W. Kramer, Ph.D., Alison M Konrad, Ph.D. and I studied the effect on boardroom dynamics of increasing women’s presence. We ...
Caregiving across the Life Span November is National Family Caregivers Month, a time to recognize those who care for family, friends, and neighbors, including the elderly, sick and disabled. While the elderly are healthier now than in previous generations, about 17 percent of ...
The Next Four Years: Electing Ourselves as Agents of Change Now that we’ve had a day to reflect on the U.S. presidential election results, it’s time to get back to the business of changing the world for women and girls, their families, and communities. We have the election to thank for bringing to light a growing gender gap in terms of the kinds of issues women and men are ...
Check Box(es) that Apply… As the Massachusetts senate race becomes increasingly heated around the topic of candidate Elizabeth Warren’s ancestry, social scientists have a unique opportunity to provide some insight into the greater conversation by highlighting recent research on racial identity in general and bi-racial identity development specifically: racial categories are ...
Caution, White Knight Half the Sky is a two-part documentary film that aired on PBS stations beginning October 1 and 2, 2012. The film’s themes are 1) the ubiquitous violence against women that is perpetrated throughout the world, especially during and in the aftermath of war, ...
Brave New Girls: Let’s Celebrate U.N. International Day of the Girl by Supporting the Malala Yousafzais of Our World I’ll bet that when the Taliban decided to fire their guns at 14-year old Malala Yousafzai, it didn’t occur to them that...
Women Change Worlds "A world that's good for women is good for everyone." Welcome to Women Change Worlds, the new Director’s Desk blog of the Wellesley Centers for Women. At WCW, also known as the Centers, we do research, theory, and action that promotes justice and wellbeing for women and girls, their families and communities – and we’ve been doing it since 1974. ...

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