The WRC is a great place to be…and you can go, too

By Jessica Jenks

A few days ago I journeyed to a place on campus I had never been before: The Women’s Resource Center.

I wondered why I had never ventured there before. I am a woman, and I like resources. What kind of resources did this place have to offer?

I arrived at my destination, 105 Normal Road, and was pleasantly surprised. I stepped inside the front door and was greeted by Jen LeBaron, the administrative assistant.

She gave me a tour of the building, which used to be a house but was converted. She showed me the office, kitchen and smart classroom.

Smart classroom? Yes, the WRC has a smart classroom that can be reserved by anyone. That’s right. Even men can reserve the room.

As we continued the tour, I realized not once did I see a shrine to Susan B. Anthony or Sojourner Truth. Interesting, very interesting.

I followed Jen upstairs, and took a seat in an empty lounge. I sat down on one of the comfortable couches, and looked up only to discover that the ceilings were not made of glass.

“We’re not a radical feminist center. We’re here to help students in anyway we can,” LeBaron said. “We are an open, welcoming, fun place to hang out. We want people to come visit us.”

The lounge would be a great place to do homework or hang out in between classes. It was quiet, had comfortable couches, a big screen, and a DVD player. Most importantly, however, food and drinks are allowed in the lounge.

“We definitely have a set group of students who come in on a pretty regular basis, ” said Colette Morgan, a student worker, “We’re always encouraging more students to come utilize the space.”

Across the hall from the lounge is a mini computer lab. The lab has three computers and a small lending library. Printing is free and does not require the use of a OneCard. The library books can be checked out all semester, and there are no late fees. How convenient and accommodating.

I learned that the Women’s Resource Center puts on 16 to 18 programs per semester. Recently they held LunaFest, a festival with short films by female filmmakers.

On Thursday, Carol Adams is coming to do a presentation on “The Sexual Politics of Meat” in Room 100 of the Art Building. Their programs even sound interesting. WRC surprised me again.

I thought that maybe the WRC was a place for women to go for counseling or something, but counseling is not offered there. A victim advocacy program is in the works, though. The WRC recently received a $300,000 grant which will be spread out over three years.

Hopefully, in January the WRC will also be a safe place for assault victims to go. The program will allow for a new staff member to be hired. The new staff person will provide assistance with the hospital, counseling and legal process.

The WRC is open on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m, but they are flexible should you want to reserve a meeting room for the evening.

All you have to do is ask.