Transforming gender and society conference to take place Saturday


K. Rambo/Iowa State Daily

Drake students perform “Messages: A Lived Experience Play about Sexual and Relationship Violence,” during the Transforming Society and Gender conference

Sage Smith

The fourth annual Transforming Gender and Society Conference will be held Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and will feature conversations surrounding gender, sexuality and feminism.

Students presenting are not only from Iowa State but also the University of Northern Iowa, Drake University, Grinnell College, Loras College and Central College.

The day will begin with registration and breakfast in the Campanile room of the Memorial Union. Martino Harmon, senior vice president for Iowa State’s Student Affairs office, will give a welcome speech. Katy Jaekel, assistant professor of Counseling, Adult and Higher Education at Northern Illinois University, will speak at the lunch session. One area of Jaekel’s research focuses on LGBTQ student experiences in the classroom, according to the event program.

Ann Oberhauser, Director of Women’s and Gender Studies, said the conference is a great opportunity for students to develop presentations on their interests they have been studying and researching.

Iowa State’s Women’s and Gender Studies Program organizes and hosts this event.

There will be three breakout sessions throughout the day where students will present research and observations they have made on several issues surrounding gender, sexuality and feminism.

Those interested in presenting at the conference submitted a proposal through an application process. Everyone who applied this year was accepted.

“Students are always looking for a new angle or trying to find something that hasn’t been considered before,” said Kimberly Hope, Women’s and Gender Studies program assistant. “I think everyone is excited to see what they come up with and what fresh perspective they bring to these topics.”

The full schedule and program details for the conference can be found on the Women’s and Gender Studies Program website. The conference is free and open to the public.

“People should expect some exciting topics that are very relevant to areas of students’ interests,” Oberhauser said. “I invite people to come with an open mind and ready to learn a lot.”