As the Feminist Intersection continues to create a presence on Drew’s campus, it was only natural that the community began to wonder who they are and what their goals as a club are. Some people got answers to these questions at the “Making a Difference: Young Adults, Social Activism and Everyday Ethics” panel held on Wednesday, Oct. 24, in Mead Hall.
COURTESY OF LYNN DELADE
Dr. Kate Ott, Associate Professor of Christian Social Ethics in the Theological School and the faculty scholar for Everyday Ethics, co-sponsored the event as well as moderated the panel. Ott is currently teaching a class in the Theological School titled “Young Adults, Ethics and Ministry.” It was in this class that sparked the idea for the panel, with the students of the class coming up with a series of questions for the Feminist Intersection board members to answer. The event was a collaboration between Everyday Ethics and the Feminist Intersection, whose board is made up of Akua Asante (‘20), Bongiwe Bongwe (’20), Kassel Franco Garibay (‘20), Anna Gombert (‘20), Maïmouna Kante (’20), Deja Lewis-Nwalipenja (‘20), Yasmin Mustafa (‘20) and Mundia Sibongo (’20).
Everyday Ethics began in the 2015-16 academic year, with the leadership and kindness of Dr. Edward Zinbarg (’98) and his wife Barbara Zinbarg. “Everyday Ethics is an opportunity for all members of the Drew community to explore the ethical notion and concept of ‘the good’ operating in various sectors of human life,” according to the program. “The initiative is intended to respond to the University’s mission by examining multiple facets of everyday life.” Mustafa stated that another goal of the event was “to join with Everyday Ethics and talk about youth activism on campus as well as youth activism in general.”
For the first hour of the panel, the Feminist Intersection members answered the questions written by the Theology students, questions that focused on how the members first got involved in social justice issues and what inspired them to come together to form this club. Bongwe said, “There is a loneliness that comes with being woke and there is an excitement and belongingness finding someone who shares that.” That being said, the goal of the movement is to be inclusive and it is not just limited to a specific type of person, who identifies a certain way. As Kante stated, “It’s a movement, everyone is invited.”
For the second half of the event, the board members took questions from the audience.
The panelists also talked about the movement’s next project — the Worth Bleeding for Campaign. The Feminist Intersection will be focusing on period poverty, acknowledging that many people who menstruate cannot afford period products. The board hopes to bring awareness to this issue on campus by partnering with external organizations and hosting a fair in which people can learn about sustainable, cost-effective and alternative menstrual products. They are also looking for non-profit organizations to donate products to that will help local communities and welcome suggestions from members inside and outside the community.
In the more immediate future, the Feminist Intersection will be hosting a General Board meeting. Follow them on Facebook and Instagram for more information. Or email your comments and questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.