Past Events

The 2019 Boston College Women's Summit featured 10 seminars on a variety of topics, including LGBTQ+ influences in various social movements, the relationship between feminism and the comic book heroine Wonder Woman, the social and personal effects of growing up "ethnic" in America, the realities of sex trafficking in New England, personal stories about finding work-life balance, and much more.

2020 Boston College Women's Summit

Keynote Speaker

Brittany Packnett

Brittany Packnett

Brittany Packnett is a leader at the intersection of culture and justice. Cited by President Barack Obama as a leader whose "voice is going to be making a difference for years to come," Brittany is an unapologetic educator, organizer, and writer. She is the author of the forthcoming book, We Are Like Those Who Dream, with One World/Penguin Random House.

Known as @MsPackyetti on social media, Brittany is a policy expert, non-profit executive, and teacher. Brittany has committed her life and career to justice. She currently plays many roles, all focused on freedom.

 

2020 Workshop and Mainstage Speakers

Makayla Davis

Makayla Davis

Natana J. DeLong-Bas

Natana J. DeLong-Bas

Marwa Eltahir

Marwa Eltahir

Nicole Greene

Nicole Greene

Amanda Kuron

Amanda Kuron

Ellice Patterson

Ellice Patterson

Caroline Portu

Caroline Portu

Shannon Reidy Nichols

Shannon Reidy Nichols

Mitra Shavarini

Mitra Shavarini

Julianne Smith

Julianne Smith

Mary Troxell

Mary Troxell

Reagan Whippen

Reagan Whippen

 Catherine Wong

 Catherine Wong


 


Women's Summit Planning Team

Amaka Nnaeto: Team Director, Caitlyn Spuckes: Co-Director of Speakers, Cam Fischer: Co-Director of Speakers, Grace Christenson: Co-Director of Logistics, Elizabeth Coscia: Co-Director of Logistics, Cecelia Petricone: Co-Director of Marketing/Outreach, Tomi Oyinloye: Co-Director of Marketing/Outreach, Sam Goober: Graduate Advisor, Katie Dalton, Director of Women's Center and Advisor

 

Saturday, February 1, 2020

PROGRAM

8:30–9:15 a.m.

Breakfast in the Heights Room

Sponsored by The Council for Women at Boston College

9–9:30 a.m. 

Registration

Robsham Theater

9:45–10:45 a.m. 

Welcome & Keynote Address

Britney Packett

11 a.m.–12 p.m.

Workshop I

Fulton Hall

12–12:30 p.m.

Lunch Pick-up

Fulton Honors Library

12:30–1:30 p.m.

Workshop II

Fulton Hall

1:40–2:40 p.m.

Mainstage Conversations

Robsham Theater Arts Center or Heights Room

2:45–3:00 p.m.

Closing Featuring FISTS and SLAM!

Robsham Theater

Workshops


Mainstage Conversations


2019 Boston College Women's Summit

Keynote Speaker

Sarah Kay

Sarah Kay

Kay is a well-known and well-respected slam poet who gained national recognition for her 2011 TEDTalk, “If I Should Have a Daughter,” in which she addressed issues of female empowerment and expression. She is a graduate of Brown University and the founder and co-director of Project VOICE, a program that uses performances and workshops to improve literacy and empowerment in elementary and middle school classrooms across the country.

 


 

 

2019 Seminar and Mainstage Speakers

Tiziana Dearing

Tiziana Dearing

Professor for Macro Practice
BC School of Social Work

Helen Ha

Helen Ha

Academic Advising Center
Boston College

Jocelyn Gates

Jocelyn Gates

Senior Associate Athletic Director
Boston College

Régine Jean-Charles

Régine Jean-Charles

Associate Professor, Romance Languages & Literatures; African and African Diaspora Studies
Boston College

Kelli Armstrong

Kelli Armstrong

Vice President for Planning and Assessment
Boston College

Joy Moore

Joy Moore

Vice President for Student Affairs
Boston College

Rachel DiBella

Rachel DiBella

Trauma-informed Gender Equity Leader

Claire Geruson

Claire Geruson

Clinical Therapist
Fenway Health

Lori Harrison-Kahan

Lori Harrison-Kahan

Associate Professor of the Practice, History
Boston College

Akua Sarr

Akua Sarr

Vice Provost for Undergraduate Academic Affairs
Boston College

Stephanie Clark

Stephanie Clark

Executive Director
Amirah Boston

Raquel Lachman

Raquel "Rocky" Lachman

Brand Marketing Executive

Cherie McGill

Cherie McGill

Assistant Professor of the Practice, Philosophy
Boston College

Jaclyn Newns

Jaclyn Newns

Spiritual Director and Campus Minister
Saint Joseph's University

Kate Haughton

Kate Haughton

Executive Director of Marketing & Communications
BC University Advancement

Seminar


The seminar is the most creative and intimate speaking platform of the Summit. During this time, attendees will have 50 minutes to hear from and connect with speakers in a more intimate environment. Attendees can choose to go to two seminars from a selection of 10 different seminar topics.


From Rights to Liberation: Queering the History of Social Movements

With Rachel DiBella and Claire Geruson

This workshop will create a space for learning, reflection and discussion about queer and LGBTQ+ influences in various social movements, including the "women's movements" in the United States. Participants will learn of important intersectional approaches to current social movements and contemplate their own social locations and motivations for engagement.


The Power of Culture: Is Wonder Woman Feminist (and why does it matter)?

With Lori Harrison-Kahan

In this interactive workshop, students will discuss the relationship between feminism and the comic book heroine Wonder Woman. We will look at examples from the original Wonder Woman comic book as well as clips from the recent film starring Gal Gadot. The speaker will discuss the connection between her childhood experiences watching the Wonder Woman television show starring Lynda Carter and her current work as a feminist scholar who recovers forgotten women writers. We will establish criteria for evaluating whether or not pop culture is feminist and discuss existing criteria, such as the Bechdel Test. Ultimately, we will ask not only whether Wonder Woman can be considered feminist, but also why we need to take pop culture seriously: how does it shape young women and the ways that they see themselves and gender relations in the future?


Growing Up Ethnic in America

With Akua Sarr

Ethnic difference has a profound effect on personal and social understandings of what it means to be an American. Multicultural literature navigates the complex terrain of race and ethnicity in America. Fiction depicts a variety of experiences and suggests that what constitutes an American identity is far from settled. A discussion of the literature invites students to share their own personal narratives - stories of race, ethnicity, class, gender, faith, and nationality - to further uncover what it means to be “ethnic” in America.


All Our Wild Wonder: Poetry Workshop

With Sarah Kay

Sarah Kay leads an intimate hands-on workshop of spoken word poetry, leaving participants with the tools they need to write and perform their own work. This crash course is designed to give participants an opportunity to whet their palates and dip their toes in the pool of Spoken Word Poetry. Sarah's varied teaching methods include original exercises, movement-based performance skills, and creative collaboration. Sarah fosters a supportive and safe environment tailored to the participants’ needs—whether beginners, experts, or somewhere in between.‌


Living in Hope, Walking through Darkness: Working in the Anti-trafficking Movement

With Stephanie Clark

Sex trafficking is a topic that is hard for us to hear about, but could you imagine devoting your life to eradicate it? Stephanie Clark, Executive Director of Amirah (a leader in the aftercare movement here in New England) is here to share with us about the realities of sex trafficking in New England. As she shares from her experience, you will be challenged to think through how you can make an impact in this movement with your own time and talent.


How to Look Fabulous and Fight the Patriarchy, Without Coming on Too Strong: Double Binds, Controlling Images, and other Gender Traps

With Cherie McGill

The verdict is in, and your body in its natural state is a problem that needs to be solved. Your personality needs work, too. Don't worry, though—there is a solution! Do you have too much hair, or not enough? Maybe it’s just in the wrong places? Is your thigh gap too big, or too small? Is your lip stain too bold, or not bold enough? Maybe it's too matte. Or, too matte for your weird, thin lips? Great news, because we can fix that! Now that you're looking great, are you too assertive, or not assertive enough? Maybe your voice is too shrill? Or, too soft? Are you too friendly, or not friendly enough? Maybe it’s just that your body language is all wrong? Don't worry! We can fix all of that, too! It's easy! Just take all the time, energy and money that you could devote to work, sleep, or fun, and use it instead to think about, research, try, buy, apply, scrutinize, work on, agonize and obsess over both your looks and your personality. Or, you could attend this workshop instead. We’ll talk about the double-binds, double-standards, controlling images and other traps intended to keep women in their place.


10 Tips to Find Your Vocation, Own Your Voice, and Thrive

With Kate Haughton

In order to find personal and professional fulfillment, you must first find your purpose and own your voice. But how do you do that? How do you know what path to take and if you’re on the right one? How do you find the courage to communicate powerfully and authoritatively? In this workshop, students will hear personal stories from the speaker, based on her own experiences in the corporate world. They’ll hear how in the midst of her for-profit work she found clues that unveiled her deeper non-profit vocation. They’ll also learn how her formative BC education and commitment to discernment played a key role in her decision to answer the call to return to her BC roots. Students will come away from this workshop with 10 practical approaches to:

  • Find a career they are passionate about
  • Differentiate themselves to accelerate professional success
  • Recognize their many amazing talents and share them with confidence
  • Stay grounded and humble


Looking Deeper: Self Awareness as a Spiritual Practice

With Jaclyn Newns

Self awareness is a necessary, daily practice that encourages us bring our best selves forward in personal and professional realms. This creative workshop will use photography as a tool for personal reflection. Participants will slow down, gather insight from images and name concrete ways to steer their life forward with intention and purpose.


 

Mainstage Conversation

The main stage conversation is a discussion-based format that weaves the stories of two prominent women. These stories seek to carry themselves on themes of women's empowerment, vocation and stories of resilience. Attendees can choose to go to one main stage conversation.


Is there such a thing as work-life balance…or is it just life?

With Tiziana Dearing, Jocelyn Gates, Helen Ha, and Regine Jean-Charles

Through sharing personal stories, this group of highly accomplished working mothers will aim to address the challenges associated with navigating a career and a family. Additionally, this conversation will explore societal pressures that can impact the choices women make. 


Be a Boss: Beliefs-based Leadership

With Kelli Armstrong and Joy Moore

Led by two of the highest ranking women at Boston College, this main stage conversation will provide an interactive look at how to develop your own leadership philosophy. The conversation will explore a variety of effective leadership styles, particularly what it means to be a leader in a Jesuit, Catholic context and the importance of developing a diverse community through leadership. Learn how to examine your own strengths as you hear from two women who have made their mark as strong leaders in the BC community and beyond.

Planning Team
 

Amaka Nnaeto: Team Director

Caitlyn Spuckes: Co-Director of Speakers

Cam Fischer: Co-Director of Speakers

Grace Christenson: Co-Director of Logistics

Elizabeth Coscia: Co-Director of Logistics

Cecelia Petricone: Co-Director of Marketing/Outreach

Tomi Oyinloye: Co-Director of Marketing/Outreach

Sam Goober: Graduate Advisor