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CONTACT: Carol Skladany, WorkLife Office (650) 723-2660

Take Our Daughters to Work Day

Hundreds of children will learn how to produce videos, shoot hoops and find out what a biologist does at Stanford's "Take Our Daughters to Work" day on April 23.

Launched in 1993 by the Ms. Foundation, this annual nationwide event will be recognized at the university for the third time. From 8 a.m. to noon, almost 300 9-to-15-year-old girls and boys (the latter are included as part of Stanford's non-discrimination policy) will be exposed to campus life and a range of careers during a critical time in their adolescent lives.

"I think the kids just want to come on campus and see what's happening," says Carol Skladany from the WorkLife Office, which is sponsoring the event with Feminist Studies and the Institute for Research on Women and Gender. Cathy Jensen from Feminist Studies adds, "The main purpose is to expose girls to the work world."

In a brochure sent last month to staff and faculty and their children, the day is explained as follows:

"Imagine a day when girls and young women like you are working absolutely everywhere ­ conducting orchestras, legislating law, designing furniture, delivering babies, you name it. Imagine a day when no question is too stupid to be asked ­ and when you'll get answers. Imagine a day when you're not too smart, too tall, too fat, too loud or too shy. Imagine a day when you're just right ­ and the world opens its doors to you."

Skladany says that dozens of people across campus have volunteered their time and their departments to host workshops. "It's going to be great," she says.

On April 23, after a breakfast outside Dinkelspiel Auditorium, participants will kick off the day listening to a panel of speakers talking about how they got to where they are, who their role models were growing up, what challenges they face today, and what their plans are for the future.

The speakers include alumna Suzanne Shaw, a news anchor at KRON-TV; former California Assemblywoman Jackie Speier, a candidate for the State Senate in November; alumna Anne Robinson, co-founder of Windham Hill Records; Sara Little Turnbull, director of the Process of Change lab at the Graduate School of Business; and Sally Dickson, director of the Office of Campus Relations.

Afterward, the children will take part in one 90-minute workshop they have selected from about 25 fields and professions. Skladany says that one of the most popular programs is a chance to shoot hoops with members of Stanford's women's basketball team. Others will go on a dorm tour to see how students live -- where they eat, sleep, study and have fun. Some will learn how and why earthquakes occur, and potential future deejays will experience what goes on behind the scenes at KZSU, the student-run radio station. Participants at HIP, the Health Improvement Program, will find out about staying fit and, for fun, learn how many chocolate M&Ms a person has to eat to gain five pounds. Still others will learn about sign language, how to surf the Web without using one's hands and how to work on a computer using only eye movements.

Cowell Student Health Service, the Stanford Center for Professional Development, the Graduate Women's Network, the Department of Public Safety, the Stanford University News Service, the Stanford Daily and the University Archives also will offer workshops. And the music, engineering, physics, English and geophysics departments will participate in this event, which concludes at noon after the children return to Dinkelspiel Auditorium.


By Lisa Trei

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