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Packed slate of events celebrates Women's History Month

Women's History Month 2019
Brenda Lopez Romero, Beauty P. Baldwin and Sarah Riggs Amico will speak at the March 27 Women's History Month breakfast on UNG's Gainesville Campus.

Women from various backgrounds who inspire and lead will be celebrated through speakers and other events on the schedule at the University of North Georgia (UNG) for the second half of Women's History Month.

Sarah Riggs Amico, Beauty P. Baldwin and Brenda Lopez Romero will speak at the Women's History Month breakfast from 9-11 a.m. March 27 in the Robinson Ballroom of the Student Center on UNG's Gainesville Campus.

"We are excited about exposing our students to these remarkable women who have achieved and exhibited a great deal of leadership throughout their careers," said Dr. Robert L. Robinson, UNG's director of Multicultural Student Affairs (MSA). "It can help these students learn and grow as future leaders of America."

Amico, executive chairwoman of auto company Jack Cooper, ran for lieutenant governor in 2018. Baldwin became the first black female school superintendent in Georgia when she took over Buford City Schools in 1984. Baldwin Elementary School in Norcross, Georgia, is named for her. Lopez Romero is a state representative who in 2016 became the first Latina elected to the Georgia General Assembly.

The Women's Minority Seminar is set for noon to 2 p.m. March 20 in the Robinson Ballroom, sponsored by the Black Student Union. Maxine Douglas, UNG lecturer of human services delivery and administration; Brandi Williams, UNG assistant dean of students for student conduct; Dr. Natasha Merchant, UNG assistant professor of foundations in teacher education; and Rose Johnson, executive director of Newtown Florist Club in Hall County, will share their experiences.

"As a woman of color, hearing how women of color have gotten where they are is important," said Wakeitha Cunningham, an MSA student worker and sophomore from Hartwell, Georgia. "We all have our own struggles, but we all can accomplish the things we want to if we push through."

Dr. Mary Gowan, new dean of the Mike Cottrell College of Business (MCCB), will be the keynote speaker at noon March 25 for "Women Who Inspire: a Women's HERstory Month Event" in the Hoag Great Room on the Dahlonega Campus. MSA also plans to recognize female student leaders at UNG at the event. Amanda Lopez, an MSA graduate assistant, is organizing the event.

"We want to continue to encourage and inspire our students to be trailblazers," said Wendell Raiford, temporary coordinator of MSA on the Dahlonega Campus.

A pair of Women's History Month documentary film showings are planned, at 5:30 p.m. March 20 in Martha T. Nesbitt Academic Building room 3110-A on the Gainesville Campus and 5:30 p.m. March 28 in the room 232 auditorium of the Health and Natural Sciences Building on the Dahlonega Campus. The film being shown at both events is "Me, My Sex, and I: Disorders of Sexual Development."

The Oconee Campus will host Women in the Arts from 6-8 p.m. March 28 in room 522 (multipurpose room), featuring a guest speaker and an art gallery hosted in conjunction with the Art Association Club on campus. Those who submit will also have the chance to speak at the event.

Ten female UNG students were honored at the Women of UNG Leadership Luncheon on the Dahlonega Campus on March 3, and the Women's History Month Expo was March 4 on the Gainesville Campus.

As UNG celebrates Women's History Month in March, it also holds the distinction of being the first senior military college in the nation to accept women into the Corps of Cadets.

On Sept. 16, 1973, four days ahead of Virginia Tech, three women entered UNG's Corps: Jean Raines, Susan Harris and Janet Walls. Norwich and Texas A&M accepted women in their Corps in 1974, while the Citadel and VMI followed in 1995 and 1997, respectively, after court challenges.

UNG's female cadets have reached the highest ranks of UNG's Corps of Cadets, and they participate in all military skills clubs, including combat shooting, mountaineering, and small unit tactics. Since the Department of Defense elimination of all gender-based restrictions in January 2016, the corps has produced 34 female officers, representing 14 percent of UNG's commissions.  Within that group, seven (21 percent) have been commissioned into all the various branches of Combat Arms.

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