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WVU-P to hold women’s symposium

PARKERSBURG — West Virginia University at Parkersburg will celebrate National Women’s History Month with “The Climb Symposium: A Celebration of Women’s History Month” 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Tuesday in the college theater in room 1305.

The event is sponsored by the WVU Parkersburg Social Justice Committee and is free and open to the public.

The symposium will be a panel discussion with local women in academia, government and media.

President Chris Gilmer will present the Peggy Adams Gilmer Memorial Book Award. The $500 award, named in honor of Gilmer’s mother, will be presented annually to a student to cover textbook-related costs.

“Most of what I accomplish in my life is due to the support of the strong women who started me on my path,” Gilmer said. “Many other people share that same story, and we should honor and respect those impactful women every chance we get.”

The schedule is:

* 11 a.m. to noon: Campus Conversations with Women of WVU Parkersburg. Speaking will be Alicia Beeson, assistant professor of English and gender studies; Kathy Frum, nursing and health sciences division chair; Cynthia Gissy, dean of academic affairs; Alice Harris, executive vice president of finance and administration; Debbie Richards, executive director of equity, inclusion and compliance; Billie Shutts, executive assistant to the president; Michele Wilson, executive director of workforce and economic development.

* 12:15-1:30 p.m.: Keep Moving, Keep Climbing. Heather Hepburn with the Actors Guild of Parkersburg will perform “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus and be accompanied by Marie Mallory. Miss West Virginia Collegiate 2019 Sarah Weeks will serve as host and Torie Jackson, dean of public affairs and experiential learning and humanities, fine arts and social sciences chair, will serve as moderator.

“I am excited to be the WVU Parkersburg ambassador and represent the student body of the college as host of the symposium,'” said Weeks. “All small acts of celebration can turn into big world movements; be the start of the change.”

The second panel will include Williamstown Mayor Jean Ford; Christina Myer, The Parkersburg News and Sentinel executive editor; Brittany Morgan, WTAP anchor and reporter; Donna Smith, WVU Parkersburg Board of Governors vice chair; Heather Hepburn, actor and singer; Miranda Reed, WVU Parkersburg Student Government Association treasurer; Morgan Carez, WVU Parkersburg Student Government Association vice president; Brooke Buchanan, WVU Parkersburg Media and Communication Club president.

“I am proud to be a part of a program that recognizes and honors the observance and celebration of women,” Smith said. “My advice to all individuals facing their own climb, whether it be in the workplace or in education, is to take time to understand who you are, what you want and what it takes to get there.”

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