The Award Winning News Publication of Mercy College

The Impact

The Award Winning News Publication of Mercy College

The Impact

The Award Winning News Publication of Mercy College

The Impact

Empowering Voices

Celebrating Women’s Impact and Advocacy at Mercy University

Women founded Mercy University, which initially operated as a women’s college.

Great and empowering women have served Mercy through the years.

We also celebrate Women’s History Month as winter fades away in March. It’s a time to reflect on the beauty of womanhood, its profound impact on society, and how it continues to shape our world today.

On March 8, Mercy University honored women with guest speakers and panels, including the prominent advocate Feminista Jones.

Mercy’s Executive Director of Media and Innovation, Edie Magnus, opened the ceremony with a deeply emotional speech. With over 25 years in television journalism, Magnus’s presence added weight to the celebration. She proudly announced that 43 percent of Mercy’s staff are women, underscoring the university’s commitment to gender inclusivity.

Mercy University’s current president, Dr. Susan L. Parish, is a testament to women’s leadership prowess. Her remarkable career speaks volumes about her dedication and competence.

Leaving the Sisters of Mercy at peace, knowing their institution is in good hands. 

Women students are brilliant. Mercy University women have been brilliant throughout the years. At the women’s empowerment conference, a panel discussed feminist pathways: an intergenerational conversation.

The Panelist

The panelist moderators were four exceptional women who discussed the allure of being a woman and the difficulties that come with it, moderated by Dr. Eva M. Fernández, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at Mercy.

Panelist Lisa Mills Campbell, the director of community programs and events at Mercy, shared that “women’s rights are in jeopardy.” Women worldwide have struggled for years, depending on the country and context.

Campbell highlights the ongoing threats to women’s rights and concludes with a thought-provoking question: “How can we empower both women and men?”

Jailene Carrasco, a proud Mercy University alumna and career counselor, emphasized the importance of addressing fair pay and abortion rights. Her advocacy extends to her Latina community, enriching the Mercy community with her values.

Abby Hirsch, a founding member of the Women’s Empowerment Conference and a respected Professor Emeritus, shared her wisdom gained over eight conferences.

Meg Tirrell, CNN’s award-winning Health Unit medical correspondent, also spoke to the captivated audience. She has served rightfully as a science reporter and contributed to more to society. She is an exceptional professional, and she bravely discussed the struggles of women with all the panelists.

As this brave, alluring woman had a great 20-minute discussion, they shared the true meaning of empathy and the lack of it nowadays. What is the true meaning of empathy? Do you share it?

Empathy is dwindling its presence in society.

The speaker  

The keynote speaker, Feminista Jones, a longtime community activist, shared her insights on women’s equality, LGBTQ rights, and her journey as a public speaker.

Jones, named one of the top 100 most influential people in Philadelphia, emphasized the importance of inclusivity and equality. Her passion stems from her childhood experiences in Queens and the Bronx, where she witnessed firsthand the inequalities in low-income neighborhoods.

Jones is a passionate advocate dedicated to becoming a predominant Feminist.

Despite facing hate and adversity as a feminist, Jones remains resolute in her belief in inclusivity and equality. She advocates for women to support each other and rise above rivalry. “I was inspired by being me,” she stated. She had the opportunity to go to private school and to travel, which opened her eyes.

“As I traveled, I realized there were problems everywhere. No matter where you go, there is trouble, oppression, and discrimination, and it’s just not right,” Jones explained.

She has been doing public speaking for many years and is very educated. Jones wants all women and all people to be included and treated equally. She explains inclusivity makes people live their best lives.

“Racism, sexism, queerphobia, gets in the way of people able to leave their best life,” Jones says.

As a teacher of race, gender, and LGBTQ experiences, Jones teaches at Temple University. She expresses how this inclusivity is in danger and how things are going poorly for people in her field. “Most universities have cut out their budget; therefore, their programs cannot fund me anymore,” Jones adds.

She expresses this due to the politics revolving around the United States.

‘Wake me up when are going to do some change,” Jones adds about the leaders of the United States.

Jones takes pride in her work and speaks passionately about incredible Black American women, such as Maya Angelou, the acclaimed poet. Jones often reflects on how educational systems must embrace diverse cultures and ethnicities worldwide.

As a feminist, Jones has faced adversity but has persevered. She shares, “People will try to harass and silence you as a feminist. I’ve dealt with it for over a decade.”

“Students need to understand why they’re in college, what it means, and what they plan to do with their degree,” Jones asserts. She underscores the significance of consciousness among everyone.

While some criticize younger generations for their perceived apathy, Jones believes cultivating empathy is essential. She faces emerging crises fearlessly, living her life without apprehension.

Jones is a dedicated public speaking activist who staunchly defends her beliefs.

In honor of Women’s History Month, let’s celebrate all women who have positively influenced the world, especially those within the Mercy Community.


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About the Contributor
Carla Gradiz
Carla Gradiz, Associate Editor
Carla Gradiz is a sophomore at Mercy University; she is an international student and majors in Journalism with a minor in Psychology. Carla comes from Honduras, Central America. She is passionate about where she comes from and focuses her writing on real issues her community faces and the issues she has to face as an international student. With much curiosity, Carla likes to explore different cultures, loves traveling to meet new people, and wants to impact the world positively. She believes writing is a powerful form of expression and a way to leave her mark. Carla writes a column titled You Can't Handle It,  in which she bravely shares real-life experiences, addresses critical issues, and raises awareness about topics she believes deserve more attention. She's passionate about using her writing to shed light on these issues. She can be reached at [email protected].

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