The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

SMU Daily Campus

SMU Daily Campus

SMU Daily Campus


New Year, New Name: SMU Women & LGBT Center

Women's Center.jpg
The Women and LGBT Center hopes the name change will bring awareness to on-campus groups like WISE, pictured here mentoring middle schoolers at the Dallas Zoo. (Courtesy of Women's Center)

The SMU Women Center has been renamed to better reflect the wide range of support that it can give students.

Now called the “Women and LGBT Center,” the office hasn’t added new programs but instead seeks to clarify the services that it can offer students.

“In the past, we would put rainbow flags on our table displays hoping people would understand that we are inclusive of the LGBT communities. Now it is clear from our title,” says Center Director Karen Click.

The Center has been supporting LGBT students since the 1980s and developed programs like Allies, an LGBT inclusiveness union of students and faculty, to increase tolerance on campus.

It also promotes groups like Spectrum, which was chartered by Student Senate in 1991, according to Spectrum’s website.

The Center believes the new name embodies the link between gender and LGBT rights. “We can’t talk about sexism without the full acknowledgement that heterosexism is intrinsically linked,” says Click.

Even before the name change, the Center formulated its mission for giving a “voice for women and the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender community, with purpose to eliminate barriers, diminish prejudices, and create a supportive climate and space for all,” according to the Center’s website.

The Center was originally founded as the “Human Resources Women’s Center” in 1973 and was the first of its kind in the Southwest, according to SMU’s students affairs website.

One of the Women and LGBT Center’s biggest event is the Women’s Symposium, which began in 1966. The series of workshops and lectures are chosen by an advisory committee called CORE, which is run by the Center.

The Center also houses interdisciplinary groups like WISE, or Women in Science and Engineering. It gives students the opportunity to mentor middle-schoolers and help foster a love of math and science.

The Women’s Center hopes that the name change will make students aware of the variety of resources that are available to them on campus.

“We wanted to make sure that our name truly reflected our mission and the work that we do with the university community,” says Click.

The Center is located on the third floor of the Hughes-Trigg building.

View Comments (1)
More to Discover

Comments (1)

All SMU Daily Campus Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *