Written by Emma Scherzer, Account Supervisor for Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art account team.

Every year on March 8th, people around the world come together to celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD). But what exactly is International Women’s Day, and how do I participate at the last minute, you ask? Great question! This article addresses simple ways to celebrate.

This holiday has been acknowledged since the early 1900s, a time of industrialization and population growth. The celebration signifies various ideals to a multitude of people, but the underlying message is clear: rejoice around the women that have made your life more gratifying.

Here are five ways to celebrate the strong women in your life, and advance gender parity.

Post on Social Media.

It sounds simple, and it is. Post photos on any platform with your mom, sister, gal pals, or a photo of your favorite female thought leaders. Share quotes from prominent figures like Gloria Steinem, Malala Yousafzai, Maya Angelou, Beyoncé, the Spice Girls, etc. A personal favorite quote of mine is from Madeleine Albright: “It took me quite a long time to develop a voice, and now that I have it, I’m not going to be silent.” Don’t forget to use the hashtags #PledgeForParity and #InternationalWomensDay.

Read, Watch, Speak.

Pick up a book or movie to learn more about the history of the female plight. Some great books to study about gender equality include: “We Should All Be Feminists” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche and “My Life on the Road” by Gloria Steinem. Or, if you want a more comedic book read, “Yes Please!” by Amy Phoeler. Another great option is to checkout the documentary Miss Representation, which is on Netflix. Take a look at Buzzfeed’s list of female empowerment movies to find more movies, (hint: Mad Max: Fury Road and Mulan are among the recommended!)


Don’t have time to celebrate? A small donation can go a long way. The National Organization for Women (NOW), National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV), and the Center for Reproductive Rights (CRR), are all nonprofits that support female empowerment.  For a list of more organizations that promote equality checkout the Global Fund for Women’s website.

Find an IWD Event Near You.

Whether you like eating, watching movies, or listening to speakers, there’s a variety of IWD sponsored events that catering to everyone. Checkout the events page of the IWD website to learn more.

Say Thank You.

Above all else, recognize the women in your life that have sacrificed to make your world a better place. Call your mom, thank your teacher, tell your friend you appreciate her. You may think that they’re already aware of your gratitude, but a simple acknowledgement goes a long way.

However you decided to celebrate, remember that women are half this world. Let’s unite together to promote equality!

Emma Scherzer is a public relations and Spanish major who will be graduating in June, and is the account supervisor for the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art (JSMA.) She will be defending her undergraduate thesis in May on sustainability in the clothing industry. Post-graduation she hopes to get a job or internship at an environmental advocacy organization.

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