A button adorning Ryan Gosling’s face and the message “Hey girl, you deserve equal wages” was the face of Lean In’s and American Association of University Women’s Equal Pay Day event held at Library Mall Tuesday.
The University of Wisconsin AAUW chapter was just started this month when founder UW senior Jiyu Zhou registered it as an official student organization April 5. AAUW is a national grassroots organization that aims to empower women through a variety of means, including campus leadership, research and educational funding, according to an AAUW statement.
Zhou became involved in AAUW when she was the first student selected from Wisconsin to be a part of the organization’s National Student Advisory Council in October 2015.
While working on the AAUW council, she said she realized how many resources AAUW provides that are beneficial to women and decided the resources would be helpful to students on UW’s campus.
“AAUW [on campus] gives [students] more exposure to … access national leadership conferences, scholarships and keynote speakers at events,” Zhou said.
Junior Sadia Majid, AAUW UW chapter co-founder, said the new chapter will be a support system for students and other student organizations on campus.
Tuesday was AAUW’s first campus event and created in collaboration with Lean In, another student organization on campus, to promote equal pay for women, Majid said.
Zhou said the two groups collaborated to make a bigger impact on the community and because Lean In had experience with the event after hosting one last year.
“We got to hear great stories from students who stopped by — we heard stories about their moms struggling, how hard it was to get promotions,” Zhou said. “Some students in engineering also shared how it is difficult to receive mentoring from advisers.”
Zhou said AAUW is looking forward to hosting its next event May 5. The campus chapter is partnering up with Student Life Center at the Wisconsin School of Business to hold a workshop for women in the workplace.
This post was updated to correct Majid’s name, and add the May 5 event will be held in partnership with the Student Life Center at the Wisconsin School of Business. The Badger Herald regrets this error.