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Next Top Model winner speaks during Women’s History Month

Submitted by Hillary Perkins on March 12, 2014 – 11:01 amNo Comment

Courtesy of UALR

The university celebrates Women’s History Month by welcoming Next Top Model winner Whitney Thompson on Wednesday, March 12 to speak in room C of the DSC at 12 noon. All genders are invited to attend.

Whitney Thompson made history by being the first woman to win America’s Next Top Model who is not a size 0 during the tenth cycle of the show. Thompson’s topic of discussion is “Breaking Down Barriers: A Plus Size Figure in a Size Zero World.” This event is sponsored by the Power of Women Program (POW) from the Office of Campus Life. The theme for 2014 is “Celebrating women of character, courage and commitment.”

Lucia Okaro, an active member of the University Program Council, said the purpose of Women’s History Month is to bring awareness about women’s contributions to society. “Women have come a long way in history, and I believe in our society today, women are rising through the ranks socially, economically and politically.”

In our country’s beginnings, women had no rights. They could not work, go to school, vote or voice their opinion. While men went out and worked, women stayed at home, cooked, cleaned, and took care of the children. In the twentieth century, when women finally began to gain their independence, they still had to fight for respect from the men. Women faced issues then that are still being dealt with today, such as date rape, sexual harassment, and misogyny.

Providing programs for women is one of the missions of the Office of Campus Life. POW is striving to provide women’s programs all year around because they are imperative for the student body.

“The speakers we bring for POW always have amazing back stories that are sure to inspire and encourage women of all backgrounds to become empowered to do positive things in their lives,” said Emily Cox, UPC Advisor with the campus life office. Cox coordinates Women’s Programs and the Welcome Celebrations.

According to the POW page on the UALR website, a woman working full-time earns 73 cents to every dollar received by a man. Out of 1.2 billion people, there are 70 percent living in poverty who are female. Unlike men, women are more likely to be victimized by an intimate partner. Females between ages 15 and 44 are normally victims of abusive relationships. For every three billion women, only eight women look like “supermodels”. An average woman weighs 144 pounds, and the average size ranges between 12 and 14.

Congress passed a law authorizing the president to designate the week of Mar. 7 as “Women’s History Week” in 1982, according to In 1987, Congress passed a law making the month of March as “Women’s History Month” due to a petition from the National Women’s History Project.

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