‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌   ‌
In this issue:
  • A note from our director
  • WLRC Spotlight: Medical Colloquium Series
  • WLRC News & Upcoming Events
  • CAN Resources
  • Staying Connected: Updates about COVID-19 and WLRC/CAN
  • CCUSC Events & Resources
  • Campus Opportunities
  • Community Opportunities
  • Connect with us!
A note from our director...

It has been a busy October at WLRC! The programs developed in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month have sought to inspire, engage, connect and challenge the UIC community, and through multiple platforms.

If you are in UIC’s College of Medicine, you will definitely want to check out Kelly’s summary below where she shares what we learned from talking with medical students during the Medical Colloquium series about how the medical school can promote an anti-racist and harassment-free environment in the medical school.

If you don’t already follow us on social media, please do so. The Facebook pages for WLRC and CAN are excellent places to stay connected to what we and our UIC partners are doing, and to learn about how to foster a more inclusive campus for women who belong to multiple communities: LBTQI, indigenous and racialized groups, living with disabilities, survivors of gender-based violence, etc. From resources on community care to Intersex Awareness Day, to what it means to center survivors: you can find it.

Don’t miss this week’s installation of “One on One” featuring JT Turner, director of UIC’s Gender and Sexuality Center. You can also find news stories (e.g. GWS colleagues Kishonna Gray on racism in gaming and Anna Guevarra helping us to understand the costs that women of color pay for being an “essential worker” in the time of COVID-19; follow both of them on Twitter for more good stuff!).

And if there is something you want to see more of, tell us!

SAVE THE DATE: The next 30th Anniversary Planning Committee meeting will take place on Thursday, November 5, 4 PM. We will leave room for debriefing about the national election.

Upcoming DVAM events:

Stop by this week’s episode of Black Table Talk which will focus on “Black Women and Gender Based Violence: Strategies for Self-Care”. BTT is a program of the African American Cultural Center and we are happy to collaborate in making this program happen.

Join the conversation at “Not Your Regular Watch Party” where R. Kelly’s history of violence will be discussed in relation to representations of Black women as victims and survivors in popular culture.

As DVAM draws to a close, Survived and Punished’s latest campaign, “Defend Survivors”, reminds us of how radical feminist values intersect with and inform the prison abolition movement in the U.S. Locking people up in prisons does not end gender-based violence. Rather, what we get is an expansion of the arenas within which violence is done to survivors. Activist groups like S & P call for us to 1) collectively defend survivors who are being punished for defending themselves; 2) push for more just responses to the problem of gender-based violence; and 3) demand that we dream of a world where we don’t turn to prisons to solve problems. Look at the beautiful artwork (Hint! If you are an artist, there’s always space in a movement for you!)! Sign some petitions! Share the information with your friends and family on your social media platforms! But also, bring the topic closer to home by writing about it!

Last, but not least: anxiety about the 2020 national elections is high. The confirmation of Amy Coney Barrett as Justice on the U.S. Supreme Court is another reminder that gender representation is not the same as gender justice.

So how can you bear out the next week and beyond?

  1. Early voting. If you are able to vote, please do so.
    • Looking for guidance on who’s on the ballot? One place to start is with the inimitable Stephanie Skora’s “Girl I Guess!” voter’s guide, a labor of love which has been in existence since 2018. Use as you see fit.
    • Some tips from Surviving the Mic about how survivors of gender-based violence can take care of themselves during the voting process.

  1. Immerse yourself in the inspiring stuff that reminds you that, while it’s important who wins the next election, it’s far more important that we are building power and building resilient communities to weather all the storms:
    • Follow our Sounds of Feminisms campaign that begins next week. Tell us what you think! We welcome suggestions about audio materials that we should feature!
    • Learn about the incredible work of Martha Jones, Black feminist legal scholar who has powerfully reframed how we think about both the 100th anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment to grant suffrage to white women in 1920 AND Kamala Harris being nominated for Vice Presidential candidate in 2020; start here. I learned through her latest must-read work Vanguard (Basic Books, 2020) that 1920 was really only a pitstop for African American women who were already deeply involved in electoral politics after Reconstruction, and that Illinois was a major space for Black women activists (Ida B. Wells, Ida M. Dempsey, Margaret Gainer, Ella Berry, Jennie Lawrence, and many others). Most importantly, the push to include some, but not all women, in the franchise was a setback in Black women’s long march against racialized exclusion from the political process.
    • Also, check out the panel on Black Women and Electoral Politics in Illinois organized earlier this year by Jane Addams Hull House; one of the panelists is Jane Rhodes, Professor and Head of Black Studies at UIC.

    • Read the memoirs of two highly respected and visible Latina journalists–Maria Hinojosa and Ilia Calderon. Very useful for understanding the complex ways that two high-profile women of color navigate their social locations based on economic status, skin color, racial identity and family background. Listen to Maria here.
    • Have you been hearing a lot about mutual aid projects over the past few months? Learn from dean spade why we need more, not fewer, of these, regardless of who occupies the U.S. White House.

    • Watch Watch Not Done: Remaking America. (I am saving this one for the evening of Election Day.)
    • What else are you doing to stay inspired and hopeful?

In solidarity,
Natalie Bennett

WLRC Spotlight: Medical Colloquium Series

Over the course of the fall 2020 semester, WLRC and CAN staff led three workshops for the College of Medicine’s Medical Colloquium:

  • “Black Feminist Scholars Writing For Change: Dorothy Roberts’ Fatal Invention” reading and discussion co-facilitated by Natalie Bennett (WLRC) and Claire Decoteau (Sociology),
  • “We Demand: What’s Now and What’s Next in Anti-Racist Activism in U.S. Medical Schools,” a panel of medical student activists, and
  • "Gender-based Violence and Medicine," facilitated by Kelly Maginot (CAN).

In these workshops, we offered a space for UIC’s medical students to analyze the forms that racism and sexism take within medical fields; develop strategies for advocacy; and reimagine medicine as a space of belonging and inclusion, rather than one that centers white supremacist patriarchy.

Participants from the Chicago, Rockford, and Peoria programs engaged with the readings and questions posed by the facilitators, and bravely posed their own: “What kind of physicians are we being trained to become?” They recounted their experiences with harassment and discrimination in classrooms and clinical settings; being rebuffed or ignored when they questioned the assumptions undergirding the uses of biological definitions of race in medicine; and voiced numerous areas for improvement in curriculum, climate, professional development, and the overall frameworks that shape the study and practice of medicine at UIC.  Here is just a sample of their demands:

  • Mentorship - Need for mentors and allies, especially among those in positions of power, who understand students’ needs and advocate for and with them. 

  • Curriculum - Should integrate conversations about power and structural inequalities from Day 1. Texts and lectures should actively work to dismantle racism in medical practice. Instructors should address gender-based violence in class, and the institution should develop shared definitions of violence, harassment, and discrimination. 

  • Standards of “Professionalism” - Are rooted in racist, sexist, ableist, and queerphobic notions of what a “professional” physician should look like. These standards should be critiqued and replaced.   

  • Institutional Accountability - Most importantly, the institution must be held accountable for making changes proactively, rather than placing the burden on student activists. Students called on the university to listen--and respond--to their demands; develop effective, survivor-centered, and trauma-informed processes for reporting violence and harm; and commit to recruiting and retaining BIPOC faculty.

A fuller report of the workshops is forthcoming. We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with the College of Medicine on this series and to be in dialogue with both incoming and advanced medical students, and look forward to future collaborations!

Black and white book cover with tri-colored DNA strands
Suggested Readings


Fatal Invention by Dorothy Roberts

This groundbreaking book by the acclaimed Dorothy Roberts examines how the myth of the biological concept of race—revived by purportedly cutting-edge science, race-specific drugs, genetic testing, and DNA databases—continues to undermine a just society and promote inequality in a supposedly “post-racial” era. Named one of the ten best black nonfiction books 2011 by AFRO.com, Fatal Invention offers a timely and “provocative analysis” (Nature) of race, science, and politics by one of the nation’s leading legal scholars and social critics.
  • Sexual Harassment of Women: Climate, Culture, and Consequences in Academic Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine
  • #MeToo in Surgery: Narratives by Women Surgeons
  • Sexism and Sexual Harassment in Medicine: Unraveling the Web
  • The perils of intersectionality: racial and sexual harassment in medicine
WLRC News & Upcoming Events

CART live captioning will be provided for all events hosted by WLRC. Please email wlrc@uic.edu for additional accommodation requests.

Black square with white text

Black Women and Gender-based Violence: Strategies for Self-care

Wednesday, October 28, 2020
2-3pm CST
Registration required for Zoom link
Join WLRC and the African American Cultural Center for a conversation about Black women and sexual violence. Addressing the sexual assault of African American women is a central part of challenging the intertwined systems of racism and sexism in the U.S.
Navy square background with translucent circles spiraling to the center

One on One with CAN & GSC

Thursday, October 29, 2020
12:30-1pm CST
Live on Facebook
Join Dr. Ada Cheng from CAN and Moisés Villada from GSC for 'One on One' conversations with members of the UIC community. Connecting beyond the surface, listening to the human side. 
"SURVIVING R. KELLY" in white text over faded images of women featured in the documentary.

Not Your Usual Watch Party!: Surviving R. Kelly

Friday, October 30, 2020
12-1pm CST
Registration required for Zoom link

Bring your lunch and join us to watch excerpts from the R. Kelly documentary and discuss issues related to gender-based violence.

White and pink text on a purple background: WLRC & CAN are turning 30!

30th Anniversary Planning Committee Meeting

Thursday, November 5, 2020
4-5pm CST
RSVP: ndab1@uic.edu

WLRC and CAN are turning 30 next year! We invite you to join us in conversation about how we can commemorate the center's history and contributions to UIC, Chicago, and the state of Illinois. Whether you have been around UIC for many years and attended our programs, or you just arrived, we want to hear your ideas!

CAN Resources
A cup of coffee, a notepad with pencils on top, a notecard with paper clips, a WLRC promo card, and WLRC buttons all form the border of a poster with text about Don't Cancel Your Class!

Don't Cancel Your Class! 

Are you thinking about cancelling class or assigning “busy work” because you can’t teach due to personal, family, or work obligations? Don't Cancel Your Class!

Arrange for a CAN presentation instead and keep your students learning and engaged even in your absence. DCYC! Is for any instructor--tenure-track, adjunct/contingent, graduate teaching assistants--who wants to make alternative arrangements for a class. We offer a variety of topics, including consent, dating violence, harassment/stalking (online and in person), healthy relationships, and toxic masculinity.

Aerial photo of UIC's campus

WLRC will be working remotely for the Fall 2020 semester. We can be reached at wlrc@uic.edu and will continue to stay connected with you through email and social media.

The Campus Advocacy Network will continue to serve UIC students, faculty, and staff. Our confidential advocate is available for virtual appointments. To schedule a meeting or request more information, please email can-appointment@uic.edu. You can also call (312) 413-8206 and leave a voicemail.

We are open to connecting with you in multiple ways:

  • Phone: (312) 413-8206 or (312) 488-9784
  • Video conference (Webex or Google Hangouts)
  • Online chat (Google Chats)
  • Email

More info & resources

CCUSC Events & Resources
CCUSC logo: "Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change" in red text on a white background, with the UIC red circle to the left.

UIC's Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change will all be open and available virtually this semester! Click each center's name below for this week's events, services, and resources:

African-American Cultural Center

Arab American Cultural Center

Asian American Resource and Cultural Center

Disability Cultural Center

Gender and Sexuality Center

Latino Cultural Center

Green and white checkered tablecloth pattern with yellow and white text describing the event.

CCUSC Virtual Meet & Greet at the Kitchen Table

Thursday, November 5, 2020

Join the Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change for a series of Meet and Greets! Every few weeks, two of our centers pair up and host a relaxed conversation about a topic that's important to our communities.

On Nov. 5, join the Latino Cultural Center and Arab American Cultural Center for conversations on two pressing issues: anti-Blackness in our communities and the 2020 election results. Sit at one of our virtual kitchen tables and meet other people to cook up collective ideas for change.

A navy banner has bold white lettering at the top of the flyer, smaller navy text on a white background in the middle, and a navy banner at the bottom with a yellow link to the guide and white logos for the UIC Disability Cultural Center and UIC Disability Resource Center.

UIC Online Events Accessibility Guide

The Disability Resource Center and the Disability Cultural Center have partnered to create this guide, which offers a consolidated resource for event planners as they facilitate accommodations. It details ways to build accessibility into events from the start and covers

  • Planning
  • Publicity
  • Responding to Access Requests
  • Setting Up ASL/CART in Online Platforms
  • Facilitating Events for Accessibility
  • Access Practices for Events of All Sizes.
Campus Opportunities


Delta Epsilon Mu: #RememberRuth T-shirts

Sale ends on 11/5/2020

The Executive Board of Delta Epsilon Mu Psi Chapter at UIC would like to ask for your help in promoting a cause in the name of our late and beloved sister, Ruth George. As you all know, Ruthie George or “Rangi Mtoto,” was sexually assaulted and murdered last year on November 23rd, 2019. This November will mark her one-year death anniversary, and in order to raise awareness about the circumstances surrounding Ruthie’s death, we have designed shirts that will be sold for $15. All the profits from this sale will be donated to the Clery Center, which is an organization that aims to raise awareness, and provide funding for on-campus programs to decrease violence and crime in schools all around the United States."

UIC Counseling Center x USG Conversation Hour

Mondays starting October 19, 2020
11:00 AM CST

The UIC Counseling Center and USG would like to invite all students to join them in a space to connect, share, listen, support, hear each other’s cultural experiences, and develop community while uplifting each other. You also do not need to commit to every session.

November 2nd: Combatting Racism and Oppression
November 9th: Self Love
November 16th: How to adapt to the New Normal

If you have any questions or are requesting closed captioning, please email Dr. Azadeh Fatemi (afatemi@uic.edu) or Dr. Dia Mason (dama233@uic.edu)

Connecting Dots International: Drive for Disability Inclusion Contest

D4DI (Drive for Disability Inclusion) is a campus-wide contest to find the best disability-friendly club/organization at UIC. Every UIC club/organization is welcome to participate in the D4Di event.

Prizes: 1st place - $750 grants, 2nd place - $500 grants, and 3rd place - $250 grants. Certificates will also be provided along with cash prize.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out  at contact@cdiworld.org


The Freshwater Lab Internship Program

Are you interested in an environmental career? Do you have a vision for the Great Lakes region or for a specific neighborhood? If you answered yes to these or to related questions, then you want to sign up for the Freshwater Lab Internship Course, a unique experience funded by the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation. A crucial component of this class involves taking this knowledge outside of the classroom and into the community through an internship placement.

The Department of Black Studies, formerly African American Studies, is an interdisciplinary department interested in focusing on the history, culture and politics of African-descended people in the Americas and around the globe in the quest for a more just and equitable world. The Department is looking for a creative student to help develop and design a new logo in line with our name change.

  • We seek a design that could be used digitally (i.e. social media) and possibly T-shirts.
  • The department's name, Black Studies, must be visible in the design.
  • Undergraduates and Graduate students from all disciplines are encouraged to apply.
  • Submission must be a .jpg or .png file

Submissions will be accepted from October 1, 2020 thru November 2, 2020 at blst@uic.edu. The selected student's design will be compensated with a prize!

Community Opportunities

National Women's Studies Association: Black Feminism and the Reimagined Politics of Democracy and Accountability

Thursday, October 29, 2020
6pm CST
Zoom registration required

Join NWSA in a Virtual Keynote Conversation with Rep. Ilhan Omar (Minnesota's 5th Congressional District), Barbara Ransby (NWSA President 2016-2018), and Cathy Cohen (David and Mary Winton Green Distinguished Service Professor, University of Chicago). 

End Rape on Campus: Reclaim Red Zones events

Check out EROC's full Reclaim Red Zones syllabus.

Centering Sexual Assault Around Survivors
October 27, 2020 | 11 AM CST
Facilitated by: Prisha Sujin Kumar, Student at Boston University on @endrapeoncampus' Instagram Story 

The Power of Your Vote
October 28, 2020 | 3 PM CST
Join End Rape On Campus, It’s On Us, and ALL IN Campus Democracy Challege for a virtual interactive call focused on equipping students and survivors of sexual violence with the knowledge and tools to embrace their voting power. Let us help you make an informed decision as you head to the polls.

How I Wrote a Bill for Primary Prevention of Sexual Assault From Your Average Law Student
October 29, 2020 | 11 AM CST
Facilitated by: Chandler Jacobs on @everyvoicecoalition's Instagram Story

Student Leader Reclaims Activism Through Student-Led Advocacy for Legislative Chance
October 29, 2020 | 5 PM CST
Facilitated by: Zoe Bertone on @everyvoicecoalition's Instagram Story

Virtual Coffee House in collaboration with It's On Us
Monday, November 2, 2020 | 3:00PM CST
It's On Us and End Rape On Campus will also be hosting A Virtual Coffee House. This is an event for students who want to share a creative talent or outlet that they use to take their mind away from election day stress. Sign up to share your favorite slam poetry, sing a song, play an instrument, or anything that makes you feel happy in this safe virtual space!

Connect with us!
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Have you checked out our websites (WLRC and CAN)? We add lots of useful content throughout the year, so be sure to bookmark both!

Get social with us!

We post regularly on WLRC's Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter and on CAN's Facebook.



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