FORT WAYNE, Ind.—Indiana University–Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW) student Nicole Meier has been selected as one of 20 students from across the United States to take part in the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) meetings in spring 2012.
The UN’s Commission on the Status of Women is dedicated exclusively to gender equality and the advancement of women. Representatives from member states gather to identify problems and issues affecting women internationally. CSW meetings are typically attended by thousands of women affiliated with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from around the world. Alongside the official discussions and reports, these NGOs sponsor hundreds of "side events" such as panels, workshops, and performances addressing local and international issues affecting women.
"I applied to the United Nations Practicum on Advocacy because this conference posed itself as an excellent opportunity for me to work with women already in the field and learn from their research and experiences,” said Meier. “I believe this experience in acting as a delegate for the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom at the Commission on the Status of Women at the UN headquarters will facilitate both my research and academic career."
As a women’s studies major at IPFW, Meier plans to pursue an academic career focusing on international policy-making and development. Meier is currently doing research on local women’s involvement in development and parliament in post-genocide Rwanda, as well as conducting personal research on women’s access to reproductive healthcare and resources on college campuses.
“Nicki represents the very best of women's studies: she's passionate about her studies, diligent in her research, and committed to making a difference in the world on behalf of women,” said Janet Badia, associate professor and director of women’s studies at IPFW. “She’s especially excited about the possibilities of intersectional and transnational feminism for advancing human rights, so I think she’s the perfect fit for this particular practicum. I couldn’t be more proud of her success in getting admitted into such a competitive program.”
The Practicum in Advocacy at the UN Commission on the Status of Women will take place in New York from Feb. 25 through March 3, 2012, and is sponsored by the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF), the National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA) and the Center for Women’s Health and Human Rights at Suffolk University (CWHHR).
The 2012 priority theme of the Commission is “The empowerment of rural women and their role in poverty and hunger eradication, development, and current challenges.” Students participate as delegates of the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom, and contribute to the official documentation of both official and informal meetings. This program is open to women enrolled at any college or university in the United States, and provides opportunities for peer-to-peer learning and career opportunities in international relations and advocacy work.
For more information, contact Janet Badia at 260-481-6895 or firstname.lastname@example.org.