LIFE UNIVERSITY CELEBRATES WOMEN’S HISTORY MONTH WITH CAMPUS EVENTS
Marietta, Georgia, March 9, 2021 – In honor of Women’s History Month, Life University (LIFE) is holding a series of events to celebrate the achievements of women at LIFE as well as to explore the evolution of women’s rights in the United States from the nation’s founding to the present day.
On Tuesday, March 9, 2021, the Life University Diversity Committee will hold its annual Journey of Women Luncheon. Bilingual Academic Support Professional Dr. Andrea Diaz, Assistant Dean of the Division of Natural Sciences Dr. Saphronia Johnson, and Disability Services Professional Dr. Erica Tomory will talk about the unique paths their lives have taken, from birth to when they arrived at Life University.
Founded in 1974, Life University is a health sciences institution most known for its Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) program, the largest single-campus chiropractic program in the world. Undergraduates can pursue 13 undergraduate degrees as well as a pre-chiropractic, degree-seeking pathway. Three graduate degrees are available, encompassing areas of sport health science, clinical nutrition and positive psychology. Some degree programs are offered to distance learners through the College of Online Education.
Diversity Committee Chair Dr. Michael Smith, Associate Dean of the College of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies, said the event is held each year to emphasize the contributions women have made and continue to make to the University and the LIFE community. The luncheon will take place virtually on the Zoom video platform from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
“I think the Journey of Women is great opportunity to find common ground and provide inspiration. It is a testament of the tenacity of women at Life University,” Dr. Johnson said. “I accepted the invitation because of all the women that have poured into my journey: I am who I am because of each one of them. My journey is full of lessons learned, obstacles, joys, tears and victories. My goal is to encourage others that may have been diagnosed, discouraged or disheartened by others. The journey was not always easy, but I learned from every step.”
“This event is significant because it showcases the diversity of LIFE,” Dr. Tomory explained. “Each of the panelists have had different upbringings and come from completely different ‘worlds.’ However, the versatile needs of our students and the Life University community have given us a shared understanding where we can learn about and from each other.”
Dr. Diaz agreed, saying that she has never talked publicly about her experiences but decided to do so after being approached multiple times by colleagues.
“For some reason, I always thought my journey wasn’t worth telling or that its impact would not be a significant one,” she said. “I decided to sit down and think about it. What was my story? What have I’ve been through to be where I am? When I decided to be open and honest with myself, I was able to see that even when my journey was a difficult one, it is still worth telling. There might be someone out there needing to listen to it. Every journey deserves to be told; even when different, they are all equally powerful. If even one person can see themselves in my history and feel empowered by it, it was all worth it.”
“I would like those that tune in to learn that sharing stories, and keeping communication and transparency at the forefront of those stories, can only build our sense of community,” Dr. Tomory added. “These stories bring us together and allow us to learn new things about each other. There may also be some experiences that we have in common that we never knew. That opens the door for new relationships, ideas and collaboration between different parts of LIFE to better serve our students.”
The Diversity Committee is part of LIFE’s Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (ODEI), which was launched in June 2020 in tandem with LIFE’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. ODEI “strives to make Life University a leading institution for inclusive excellence where people of all identities, perspectives and experiences find a welcoming environment where multiplicity, parity and inclusiveness are unwavering values.” The office serves as an umbrella for several University entities and a resource for all individuals at LIFE, hosting frequent events, workshops and trainings for the LIFE community.
ODEI is holding a yearlong series of symposiums entitled “With Liberty and Justice For All.” The next event, “With Liberty and Justice For All: On the Basis of Sex,” is the inaugural event in a new partnership with the Kennesaw State University Gender and Women’s Studies program. The virtual panel discussion is open to all and will take place Tuesday, March 16, 2021 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. live on Zoom, focusing on the 14th and 19th Amendments to the U.S. Constitution, the right to privacy and a potential amendment recognizing women as equal and autonomous citizens.
Life University strives to empower its students to succeed both professionally and personally. LIFE advances a leading-edge approach to higher education while also remaining true to the University’s philosophical commitment to produce informed leaders who exemplify humanistic values in their professions. To achieve this goal, LIFE recognizes and demonstrates its dedication through three official Life University Values: Lasting Purpose, Vitalism and Integrity.
LIFE’s 110-acre campus in Marietta, Georgia, just northwest of Atlanta, is home to more than 2,700 undergraduate, graduate and professional students who come from all 50 United States and more than 45 countries.
To learn more about the Life University Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and its programs, visit LIFE.edu/ODEI.
For more information on Life University, please visit LIFE.edu.