By Julia Vergara | Staff Writer
Baylor University Libraries, The Institute for Oral History and Women’s and Gender Studies will be launching the Baylor Women’s Collection website at the “Sharing Her Story” event 3 p.m. Thursday at Armstrong Browning Library.
Director of Armstrong Browning Library Jennifer Borderud said the new Baylor Women’s Collection site will highlight materials relating to the achievements of women found in the Baylor Libraries and the Institute for Oral History.
“The primary purpose of the site is to provide Baylor faculty and students an easy way to discover the rich resources we have that were created by and about women,” Borderud said. “Our hope is that faculty and students will use these resources in their teaching and research.”
Amie Oliver, associate director of The Texas Collection and Librarian/Curator of Print Materials, said her and Borderud came up with the idea for the Baylor Women’s Collection site while they were at a conference at the University of Iowa. While they were there, they noticed a women’s collection site and saw a need for one at Baylor.
“For all of our collections, we do have a lot of male voice represented but having these women speak and having their own place too is really important,” Oliver said.
Oliver said everyone jumped on board immediately once they proposed the idea.
“We knew that it was going to be great,” Oliver said. “But we didn’t know until it was finished how awesome of a resource it already is and it speaks to the power of these women.”
According to Oliver, the first meeting about the Baylor Women’s Collection site was in July 2017 and they decided early on that they wanted to have something in place by Women’s History Month in 2018.
When the site is unveiled Thursday, there will be 71 entries. However, Oliver said as they continue to process collections and add materials, the site will continue to grow.
Oliver said the site does not just highlight women, but also women’s groups and things that women have had a big hand in. Individuals will be able to view topics such as Baylor Round Table, the University of Mary-Hardin Baylor and Baylor Female College.
The site’s launch will be part of a “Sharing Her Story” event, which will include a panel discussion on the importance of preserving women’s stories.
Borderud said she thinks it is important to name and understand the many contributions women have made to society. She hopes that this site will be a starting point for discovering women who have had an impact in areas such as religion, politics, art, medicine and more.
“I knew that having these women in one place was going to be impressive,” Oliver said. “What I did not imagine was how powerful it was going to be.”
After the Women’s Collection Site is officially launched, faculty and students can access it through Women’s and Gender Studies’ website.