Student Organization Spotlight: ATHENA

Shira Tarlo, Staff Writer

Bucknell ATHENA is a chapter of ATHENA International and is dedicated to supporting, developing, and honoring women leaders, inspiring women to achieve their full potential, and creating balance in leadership worldwide and on campus.

The University’s ATHENA chapter is perhaps one of the biggest student organizations, and its membership continues to increase. The club encompasses approximately 100 members right now and has anywhere from 40-60 members at each meeting.

Bucknell ATHENA President Caitlin Maloney ’16 is the founder of the University’s ATHENA chapter.

“I brought ATHENA to Bucknell in January 2015, although the process started about a year earlier, because I felt that there was limited space on campus, at least for me, to speak about women’s issues and to find out ways to empower women to be great leaders. ATHENA has become a valued outlet on campus to empower women. ATHENA has done a great job empowering women intellectually, in student life and academics, and in leadership. I am very proud of the group’s successes,” Maloney said.

The University’s ATHENA chapter utilizes the international chapter’s leadership model, which consists of eight attributes to cultivate female leadership on campus: Authentic Self, Relationships, Giving Back, Collaboration, Courageous Acts, Learning, Fierce Advocacy, and Celebration and Joy.

As part of its effort to give back, ATHENA has partnered with the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA), a national organization dedicated to empowering women and eliminating racism. ATHENA’s partnership with the YWCA involves providing volunteers and fundraising for the women living at the YWCA shelter in Williamsport, Pa.

ATHENA’S mission is to also provide an outlet for female leaders on campus to consider concerns about gender relations and equality in the community and workforce. The organization’s meetings serve as biweekly forums to discuss prevalent issues, host guest speakers, and plan events to spark significant change in the local community.

Most recently, Bucknell ATHENA organized a student lecture and fundraising event for Fatima Arabzada ’16, an Afghan student whose family has been directly affected by terrorist attacks in Kunduz, Afghanistan.

Bucknell ATHENA already boasts a large membership, but it is open to any member of the University community who is committed to its mission of empowering women. To join the organization, sign up on the Get INvolved network and email Maloney ([email protected]) about attending meetings and events.

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