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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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American Association of University Women unites students to close gender gaps

Photo by Brandon Holmes
Women’s Resource Center

The American Association of University Women, or AAUW, is a national organization focused on education, economic security and advocacy for women.
AAUW President and bioinformatics senior Kelby Kosel said the national branch of the organization has college partners, one of which is Texas A&M.
“Our vision is equity for all,” Kosel said. “We strive to not only empower women but to educate them so they can go advocate for other women. The mission of the college and university partners is to empower college-aged women, so after we graduate, we become full-fledged members of AAUW.”
In addition to the national role of AAUW, the A&M branch wants to serve in a multitude of capacities for its members, Kosel said.
“We encompass it all. We’re not just service, we’re not just social, we’re everything,” Kosel said. “I tell my members, you literally don’t have to join another org[anization]. You can get everything you need out of it.”
AAUW Vice President Lily Samuels, biomedical technology senior, said she has been involved with AAUW since her freshman year and the organization has given her more than she could have anticipated.
“It hasn’t been what I thought it would be at the beginning. It’s been so much more,” Samuels said. “We do so much. We do professional development [and] speaker meetings, touching up on topics like intersectionality. AAUW has been a good place for me to find women who think like me and have the same priorities that I do.”
Samuels said she believes AAUW will be a great fit for students who want more involvement than just a weekly group meeting. She said the organization is oriented to help women improve their daily lives as students.
“AAUW is dedicated to female empowerment on and off campus. Anyone who wants to better themself personally and professionally should join,” Samuels said. “I believe the core of our values are in education and understanding the problems that women face daily. If you’re into a feminist organization, and you’re looking for one that gives you more than a meeting every so often … then I believe AAUW could be the place for you.”
AAUW marketing director and sociology sophomore Zoe Lynn said she has greatly enjoyed her time with AAUW thus far.
“I was looking for a smaller organization on campus, and it was just a perfect fit for finding women who had like-minded views and were interested in the same things as me,” Lynn said. “I wanted to regularly advocate for women’s rights. It’s been one of my favorite experiences at Texas A&M.”
Looking into the future, Lynn said she hopes AAUW can increase its membership and overall reach on A&M’s campus.
“Our goal is to be more active on campus now that [COVID-19] vaccines are rolling out. I really want us to expand on campus and reach other students,” Lynn said. “My biggest goal is for the organization to grow as a whole, to reach other students so we can help keep A&M students informed on women’s issues.”
Kosel said she invites any interested students to reach out and seek membership with A&M’s AAUW website.
“Our applications are currently open [and] they’re going to remain open for the rest of the semester,” Kosel said “It’s not a very formal process. It’s just a matter of filling out the application, and if we feel like you’re a good fit, then you’re in.”

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