AUSG Women’s Initiative (WI) is a non-partisan, student-run organization that helps coordinate and advise campus departments and committees on programming and policy decisions that affect marginalized students, faculty, and staff of American University. WI is housed in the Vice President’s Cabinet of American University Student Government.
WI is responsible for creating and delivering responsive, effective and educational programming to address a wide range of issues through the lens of gender and sexuality. WI programming reflects core values of anti-violence, anti-racism, environmental & climate justice, queer & trans inclusion, and wellness. WI is committed to working in collaboration with other student organizations, academic departments, student services, and off-campus organizations to further this mission.
WI is committed to progression, inclusivity, and responding to the programming needs of the American University community. Moving forward, the goal of WI is to exceed these expectations through cross-collaboration. WI serves as a safe space and resource for grassroots activism and coalition-building.
AUSG Women’s Initiative was formerly housed in the President’s Cabinet of American University Student Government, but now is housed under the Vice President’s Cabinet of AUSG.
In the past, AUSG Women’s Initiative has focused on advocating for policies and structural changes in the campus administration. WI had a significant role in increasing sexual assault and wellness resources on campus, and is committed to continuing violence prevention on AU’s campus.
WI has evolved to become a more inclusive and responsive organization. Past programming that was exclusionary or outdated, have been eliminated or reimagined to fit the needs of the American University student body.
For example, the Vagina Monologues was a traditional WI event that has now been transformed into the Breaking Ground Monologues. The Breaking Ground Monologues is student written and directed, which is emblematic of WI’s prioritization of creating inclusive platforms for student voice on campus.
WI began as an advocacy oriented organization, but has now grown to include both advocacy and programming. Annual programming events include programming for Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October, the student written and produced Breaking Ground Monologues, and Sexual Assault Awareness Month programming including Take Back the Night.
WI has a history of working closely with other campus organizations and departments to host programming on a broad range of topics regarding issues of gender, sexuality, race, environmental justice, and wellness. As WI has moved towards more progressive values, it has made a conscious effort to more community-oriented programming.