The Faye C. Goostree Women’s Symposium is back after a brief hiatus last year, said Elizabeth Howard, Goostree committee chair.
“Unfortunately, last year we ran into scheduling conflicts that prevented us from having the symposium,” she said. “We are excited to have Sen. Beverly Powell come and present this year’s topic Leaders and Legends: The Ladies who’ve Changed Texas Forever. We really have a wonderful event planned this year and hope many students and faculty will attend.”
Howard noted that the event is free.
“We will also have the American Association of University Women set up in the Martin Center; they will be handing out information about how women can negotiate a higher starting salary after graduation,” she said.
This year the Goostree Symposium will be 12:15 p.m. Tuesday in the Nick and Lou Martin University Center. The presentation will be followed by a luncheon in Room B, according to Texas Wesleyan’s website. The deadline to purchase luncheon tickets was Feb. 11.
Howard said she has been part of the Goostree committee since 2014, after Dr. Michelle Payne, associate professor of political science, introduced her to this amazing program.
“Faye Goostree was a visionary,” Howard explained. “She established this symposium to celebrate women who were doing great work in their fields and gave them a platform to share their journey and inspire other women.”
Powell said she is looking forward to speaking.
“I am very passionate about Texas Wesleyan,” she said, “and I have served on the Board of Trustees for nearly 20 years. I have made many good friends and formed a lot of meaningful relationships here.”
Powell, who represents District 10, said she came to her first Goostree symposium in 2011 to hear Melany Neilson, Pulitzer Prize nominee and wife of Texas Wesleyan President Frederick G. Slabach, to discuss the book she had just published.
“Goostree is an important event because it focuses on major accomplishments of Texas women,” Powell said.
According to senate.texas.gov, Powell received her B.S. and M.B.A. from Texas Wesleyan “as a non-traditional student and single mother.” Her continued commitment to education has placed her on the Education and Higher Education Committees in the Texas Senate, “where she co-sponsored an $11.6 billion school finance bill, and created the Texas WORKS Program, designed to provide on-the-job training opportunities for students enrolled in Texas universities.”
Student Government Association President Alyssa Hutchinson wrote in an email that Goostree is important.
“I think it’s important for women to attend as many leadership/development opportunities as possible,” Hutchinson wrote. “We have women who have made it through the twists and turns of life and who are trying to give us the tools to be more successful than the last generation, so there is no need to reinvent the wheel.”
Hutchinson added that she supports Goostree, and other women should, too.
“Workshops like this allow us (women) to find ourselves, not who we have been told to be,” she wrote. “This symposium was established by a Texas Wesleyan woman for Texas Wesleyan women.”