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March Feature Highlights Struggles, Success of “Womxn”

Twenty-three Emerson women who have achieved success in their chosen careers will tell their stories as part of the Office of Career Services’ new initiative, Womxn of Emerson.

The project, hosted on Career Services’ website, CareerBuzz, looks to profile female Emerson graduates with careers in a wide range of fields related to the arts and communication. The women will be talking about their time at Emerson, their struggles and triumphs, and the often-winding paths their careers have taken.

Womxn of Emerson will feature alumnae throughout the month of March, which is Women’s History Month, and begins Wednesday, March 1, with arts educator and National Center of Afro-American Artists founder Elma Lewis ’43, followed soon after with Quinn Marcus ’13, host of ABC Digital’s A Little of Your Time with Quinn Marcus

“It is important for students to see all the varied things that alumnae do,” said Jessica Chance, assistant director of Career Services, “…sometimes directly related to their degree, sometimes not directly related, just to see how people figure out, ‘This is what I am good at.’”

The initiative is a collaboration between three College offices: Career Services; the Division of Diversity and Inclusion; and the Elma Lewis Center for Civic Engagement, Learning, and Research.

For the Elma Lewis Center, Womxn of Emerson is a way to highlight Lewis’s work and the tremendous legacy that she has left behind for both the Boston and Emerson communities, as well as African American artists in general. 

“I pulled a couple of quotes from the interviews she did for the first post that illuminate some things that folks would be thinking about now: favorite authors, role models, how to make change in this world,” said Judy Pryor-Ramirez, executive director of the Elma Lewis Center. “So to hear [her[, from her own words, share those thoughts, I thought [was] a new way of looking at her.”

The project also highlights the importance of inclusivity when talking about gender identities, through the spelling of “womxn.”

“There are variations of the spelling of ‘women,’ outside of the symbol of womanhood, that is more inclusive,” Chance said. “It tends to be ‘y’ or ‘x.’ ‘X’ tends to be more inclusive of [LGBTQ+] all across the board.”

The series is supported and promoted by Career Services Director Carol K. Spector.

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