Welcome to Bellingham AAUW

Judith Entwife

Celebrating 100 years of service

by Judith Entwife, Bellingham AAUW President

As we prepare to celebrate our 100th year in Bellingham, our local branch of the American Association of University Women renews its commitment to our founding goals: offering college graduates the opportunity for service and continuing educational programs.

In September, 1918, Bellingham women college graduates organized to get things done for women. During the next 100 years, we have turned that good idea into real progress for women. We began by contributing money to Marie Curie’s research in the Twenties. We went on to support legislation to allow doctors to give out contraceptive information in the Thirties. In the Forties, we were early supporters of the UN. Then, in the Fifties, we backed legislation for pay equity for women and, in the Sixties, worked for passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts. In the Seventies, it was Title IX. The Eighties saw our Legal Advocacy Fund to support legal action against sex discrimination in higher education, followed by advocacy in the Nineties for gender equity in K-12 education.

With the new century, we continue to make the world a more equitable place for women the same way we began the last century: by promoting opportunities for service for college graduates and by providing them educational programs and activities. Our service focuses on scholarships for women in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and STEM education and recognition for elementary, middle and high school girls through Girls Go Tech, Tech Trek and High School Scholars programs. In addition, we continue to provide educational programs to our members at our monthly meetings, as well as in special interest groups, including the Adelante! Book Club, Reel Movie Lovers and, with others in the community, the Foreign Policy Association’s Great Decisions discussion group.

My vision for our Bellingham Chapter of the AAUW is to include each member at their highest level of expertise to move each of us—member, scholarship recipient and women in general—to each individual’s highest level of accomplishment.

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If you are reading this, perhaps you are interested in joining Bellingham AAUW.  We hope so!  Please browse our Website, and feel free to contact us or attend one of our events.

President:  Judith Entwife, Ph. 360-734-0444    

Membership Chairperson:  Susan Moen, Ph. 360-778-2510

It seems that many clubs and civic groups are experiencing declines in membership, and the usual reason given for this is increasing use of online sites such as Facebook.  This may be true, but what you can’t get online is a hug or a handshake!  Humans are socials creatures, and I believe that nothing can replace the warmth of face-to-face contact.  Having attended many virtual meetings in my business career, I have to say that while they can be useful, they run a poor second to actually being there.

This is one reason why we have a few minutes built into each AAUW meeting for chatting over coffee or tea.  I think it is also one of the reasons our Adelante! book club continues to thrive, and our new interest group, Reel Movie Lovers, draws a diverse group once a month to see a movie and then critique it afterwards.

When someone new joins Bellingham AAUW, it is often because of changes in their life:  perhaps they are new to Whatcom County, they have recently retired, or their kids are now in school or off to college.  So they are looking to build connections with others.  AAUW is a place to do that.  So, come to one of our meetings, and be prepared for it to feel good!  You may meet artists, authors, board directors, scientists, teachers or world travelers – every conversation can be a learning experience.

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