Smoking ban update: policy will be implemented gradually

Reminders have been distributed to remind smokers that the smoking ban will go into effect August of next year. These stickers are on all smoking poles around campus. Photo by Hugh Thornhill '14.

Reminders have been distributed to remind smokers that the smoking ban will go into effect August of next year. These stickers are on all smoking poles around campus. Photo by Hugh Thornhill '14.

It was back in February when President of the College Karen Lawrence sent the student body an email about the College’s decision to go smoke-free. It came as a shock to many, who were expecting a major revision of the current policy but not a complete ban of smoking on campus.

Most students who were around in 2012 remember the Smoke Policy Taskforce who began in April 2012, a ten month-long process consisting of reviewing the current policies and New York State regulations regarding smoking on college campuses, Town Hall Meetings, a survey sent out to the community asking for their input, and reviewed reports from Security and Student Affairs on the problems regarding the current smoking policy on campus. Comprised of administrators, students, and faculty, many of whom were current or former smokers, they hoped to address these concerns.

Many students at the time assumed that the school was possibly going to go with the option of setting up designated smoking areas around campus. By the end of the investigation in February 2013, the taskforce voted on one of two options to recommend to Karen Lawrence and the rest of the school administration: either to create designated smoking areas or ban smoking from the campus completely. The majority voted for the ban, and President Lawrence formally accepted the ban at the end of the 2012-2013 school year.

The main reasons for this ban, according to the final recommendation from the taskforce, was to eliminate second-hand smoke and reduce the amount of cigarette butts scattered throughout campus. Director of Health Services and a member of the taskforce, Mary Hartnett, said that although smoking is banned, being in possession of tobacco products and using tobacco products that don’t require smoking, such as chewing tobacco, are not prohibited under the new policy. She did, however, mention that the use of electronic cigarettes (E-cigarettes) are banned under the new policy, stating that there is some evidence that the vapor given off of by E-cigarettes is harmful.

Upon the final decision to go smoke-free, the school began to set up a Smoke Free Policy Implementation Committee to educate and gradually prepare the community for the change, which could be jarring to the community otherwise. Hartnett is heading the committee and has been hard at work since March of this year managing it. The committee has since been divided into four smaller subcommittees, which include Policy Writing, Smoking Cessation, Campus Education, and Communication and Marketing. Each subcommittee has its own responsibility to make the transition to a smoke-free campus as smooth as possible.

One of the ways the Implementation Committee has been educating the campus about the new policy is by hosting focus group meetings for students, faculty and staff. A focus group for the students was held on Oct.15, in which students were given the opportunity to voice their opinions on how to better educate the community. A similar focus group was offered for faculty earlier this month. Besides education, the Policy Writing subcommittee is currently looking into refining the policy so that it is fair to everyone on campus.

“What we’re looking at is a potential graduated fine for first-time, second-time, and third-time offenders,” said Dean of Student Affairs, Paige Crandall. “And this would apply for everyone, including students, faculty, and staff.”

Though the school has been claiming that the new policy will be beneficial for the entire community, there have been students in opposition. One concern brought up by Senior Class President Emily Rogers (’15) was that there was a lack of communication between the taskforce and the student body concerning whether or not a ban was even being seriously considered.

“While I do not believe in some kind of ‘tyranny of the majority’, what I will say is that it is rather disconcerting that it was not communicated to the students that a ban was even in the picture. [I am] saying this as someone who was on Senate the year this was discussed,” Rogers said.

Another concern was whether the policy was too excessive. Many students still believe that the designated smoking areas are a better alternative than an outright ban. “We’re going after an acorn with a sledgehammer,” said Will Duffield (’15) in regards to smoking-related litter being one of the justifications for the ban. “It’s a supremely disproportionate response to ban smoking across campus.”

In addition, there is a concern of how effective the policy will be and whether students will adhere to it. According to the survey sent out to the SLC community by the taskforce, while 40 percent of students who responded said that they would abide by the policy, 49 percent said that they would find a way to use tobacco anyway.

Some students have reacted to the new policy with protest. Several students coordinated a “Smoke-In” on Oct. 13 at the Yoko Ono structure. Organized by students Adriana Lucci (’15) and Catherine Readick (’15), the event was meant to highlight the students’ disapproval of the new policy. On the Smoke-In Facebook event page, it was stated: “Of course smoking is an unhealthy activity. But to ban it all together, completely opposing compromise is not right. I believe that the ban that is going to be passed was not properly shared with the community of Sarah Lawrence.” The organizers added that people who participated did not have to be smokers, and would be very welcome to stand with the protest. Lucci stated that they intend to hold more protests of this nature in the near future.

Though there are a number of students on campus who are still opposed to this new policy, Hartnett emphasized that it was in fact a number of students and the Committee on Student Life who originally brought up the issue. She believes that there are a number of students, particularly those who were not on campus when the task force was conducting its investigation, who are unaware of the history of the decision. “This was driven by students and the Committee of Student Life; this was not just decided by the President,” said Hartnett.

According to Crandall, this issue has come up again and again in the past, but it wasn’t until recently that the school went to such lengths to address the concerns. “Since I’ve been here, which has been since 2010, I was told that there were going to be two things that will come on the agenda every year. And that was the ban on the blood drive and smoking issues,” said Crandall.

There has been some discussion in the Student Senate about the new policy as well. Duffield, a senator, suggested a referendum to find an accurate opinion from the students, faculty, and staff about whether they believe the policy will work.

However, regardless of the opposition, members of the Implementation Committee emphasize that the policy has been decided and is not going to change. They are now focusing on getting feedback on how to best educate the community and ease implementation.

“When Karen sent out the email, my name was on it for people who could work with us on the policy. I have opened up my subcommittee meetings for anyone who wants to join,” said Hartnett. “I am reaching out to the community for their input as we go through the transition to the new policy, so that we may hear everybody’s ideas about education, about implementation, about sanctions, and about compliance.”

by Hugh Thornhill '14
Staff Writer and Contributing Layout Editor

New zine explores the role of technology in modern life

Image from slc's newest zine: fictional anatomy founded by sophomores sofia seidel and noushin ahdoot.

Image from slc's newest zine: fictional anatomy founded by sophomores sofia seidel and noushin ahdoot.

Earlier this year, two SLC students started a new campus publication called Fictional Anatomy. The zine, according to its mission statement, is dedicated to the "search for significance in contemporary life." The co-founders of the publication are sophomores Sofia Seidel and Noushin Ahdoot, who say that the idea for the zine came out of feeling a certain lack of respect for aspects of the modern world that they felt were natural to include in their work. According to them, the publication, "stands against the erasure of technological and internet realities from today's literary and visual art forms," and is, "committed to exploring how modern modes of interaction are shaping what it means to be human."

Ahdoot explained the origins of the idea, saying, "I've noticed that there's this pressure to erase things of 'this time' from writing, assuming that would render it cheap or superficial. I've felt that pressure in deciding what to write about, and in deciding what details to leave out from my writing. There's this great piece by Laura Miller of the Guardian called 'How Novels Came to Terms with the Internet' that I read a while ago. That article really set the mental ball rolling."

Seidel added, "There seems to be a general disrespect for the internet and other modern technology, in that certain experiences are seen as less meaningful, but they don't play any less of a role in my life." She expanded on this idea, saying, "I went on Omegle one night last year; my plans with friends had fallen through but I still wanted to have a conversation with somebody. I got lucky and didn't match with a pervert and this person opened the conversation with a list of elements and then percentages, and then I said, 'I don't know what this means', and then the stranger said, 'It is the composition of the body--all the elements--that is you--sitting all together'. And we had a really interesting conversation after that. And I'm not saying that everyone who goes on Omegle is going to not be shown a photo of a penis, but what I am saying is that that experience is not any less profound than meeting a stranger face to face."

Seidel and Ahdoot hope that the zine that can create a forum on campus for discussing how technology changes the search for meaning in the world today. Ahdoot explained that it is often difficult to deal with the present in various art forms, but added, "I think that there needs to be a space for dealing with it. I've had many, many conversations with people who work in an endless nostalgia, and while I understand and see where they're coming from, I don't think this should be an excuse." Seidel continued, "I think the internet is a perfect reflection of our society. It's not more degenerate, it's not less moral, it's just public. People think that the trash on the internet is creepy, but people do creepy things 'irl' that you don't even hear about."

The zine accepts both writing and visual art, and publishes twice a year. The deadline for the first issue will be the last week of this semester, and the issue is set to be released at the beginning of next semester. Seidel and Ahdoot agreed, "the more form bending, the better. We take poetry, fiction, interviews, transcribed performance pieces, short and long form pieces, nonfiction, essays, novel excerpts, screen-shots, paintings, photographs, prints, mixed-media experiments, and everything in between!"

While the focus of the zine is technology, Seidel clarified that they would like to include any work exploring communication and connection. She said, "We don't only want pieces related to the internet. It's just one facet of our reality and one tool for meaning-making, and we just want to acknowledge the fact that the search for meaning has now been expanded to include that along with the types of encounters that human beings have been participating in for centuries." Ahdoot added, "I can't claim that this publication will be the vehicle to deal with these issues properly or to flesh them out in the highest quality, but I still think it's worth a try."

by Janaki Chadha '17
News Editor

Handicap friendly changes coming to SLC

The handicap friendly courtyard in the Esther Raushenbush library.   Photo by Julia Schur '15

The handicap friendly courtyard in the Esther Raushenbush library. 

Photo by Julia Schur '15

Many buildings at Sarah Lawrence were built before the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) passed, and the evidence can be seen in door widths, faculty office locations, and bathroom sink heights.

President Karen Lawrence said, "One of the things about Sarah Lawrence is that we have beautiful old buildings that were never constructed with this in mind, and that makes it hard for us to retrofit every building. We do have a five-year plan to make buildings ADA accessible and that does not depend on donor funding. As a college, we want to do that and we need to do that.”

Until last year, Associate Dean of Studies & Disability Services Polly Waldman had an office on the second floor of Westlands that was not wheelchair accessible. When she got the job in 2006, the position was a new one at SLC. "It was created and I was hired. I had directed disability services at another college," said Waldman.

She now works closely with students of any disability, as early in the school-year as possible. Her office is also now much more accessible. "I set up a confidential file here. It's not part of a student's permanent record. No information gets shared to their faculty without written permission, and so I sit and work with each student individually once they have their classes, and we determine what accommodations they may need, what they're entitled to and what they benefit from, so then we write a letter together," she said.

While many of Sarah Lawrence's buildings remain fairly old, disability awareness has spread significantly throughout campus over the last decade. Around 2005, an SLC student group called Beyond Compliance formed. It was, "dedicated to raising disability consciousness on our campus." Today, a group on campus called Disability Alliance advocates for accessibility and respect for people with disabilities.

Rebecca Gross ('17) is the current head of Disability Alliance. She attended the group last year and eventually the group asked her to coach. "I actually went to a high school that specialized in learning disabilities,” said Ross, “so I've always been a very loud and proud advocate and I'm not ashamed of any disabilities that I have," she said. The group discussions and activities vary from week to week, and helps bring them together.

"We're sort of 50% activism and 50% community, so we want to create events to raise awareness about disability issues and disability rights issues, as well as just creating a comfortable environment where people don't feel like they have anything that they are supposed to hide or they're going to be judged for, which sadly often elsewhere can happen," said Gross.

Disability awareness also plays an important role in our curriculum. Sarah Wilcox, a sociology professor at Sarah Lawrence, has taught a few classes on disability. "Because one of my main areas is medical sociology and questions of health and illness disabilities come up in my classes in a lot of different ways," Wilcox explained.

Wilcox has spoken with many of the members of Disability Alliance, and said she has had a growing connection over the years to disability services and advocacy on campus. "There has been a number of trends that were independent but that have come together in a very synergistic way," she said.

More subtle changes have also shown up on campus over the last few years. For example, at the library underneath the walkway there is a garden, and until recently there was not a paved path; the garden is now wheelchair accessible. There are also two new handicap parking spaces outside the PAC this year.

The renovations around campus are part of a five-year strategic plan to bring SLC up to ADA standards. Kyle Wilkie, Assistant Vice President for Campus Operations and Planning wrote, “Every renovation that the college plans has persons with disabilities in mind. Aside from the less obvious architectural elements, we also consider which materials, furniture, fixtures, and equipment would be best for persons with disabilities.” Many people believe that ADA has a clause stating that something "grandfathered in," meaning something built before ADA existed, does not need to have improvements made. In reality, it has been required for facility executives since Jan. 26, 1992 to begin renovations.

According to, the ADA has a provision called Safe Harbor which states that modifications don’t need to be made for a building that complies with 1991 standards. Renovations, however, always need to be brought up to 2010 standards.

Cait Chamberlin (‘16) has a temporarily broken foot. To get to classes, she has to call Public Safety to drive her. She claimed it is not a perfect system, however, since Public Safety is not exclusively for accessibility services. "Sometimes they have to stop an alarm from going off. Often times they'll be transporting me, but they also have their other duties," she said.

As the college continues on its five-year strategic plan, students and prospective students will hopefully see more accessibility and acceptance for any form of diversity on campus.

by Joseph McFarland '16

SLC Phoenix

The Phoenix is a non-profit, student-run publication representing the voices and opinions of Sarah Lawrence College community members. Our print edition publishes bi-weekly on Tuesdays, and our online edition is updated multiple times per week. Anyone may attend our open meetings at 9:00 PM on Wednesday nights in the North Room of the Pub.

Issues surrounding sexual violence and misconduct persist on campus

Dean of Studies and Student Life, Allen Green, led the first sexual misconduct meeting on Sept. 18. Photo by Anthony Magana '17

Dean of Studies and Student Life, Allen Green, led the first sexual misconduct meeting on Sept. 18. Photo by Anthony Magana '17

For the past year, the subject of sexual violence and harassment has loomed over our campus like a specter. Brought to popular attention by a chain of assault cases and acts of misconduct that occurred one after another early last year, it is has been an ever-present, urgent and scary topic that fails to avoid anyone’s attention. This year has seen the creation of two new student organizations (Dangers of a Single Narrative and Students Against Sexual Violence), and even a full-fledged investigation by the Department of Education into our college's adherence to federal funding policies. 

Many students have spoken out about the sexual violence on campus, and many continue to do so. An overwhelming majority of interviewed students critiqued either the current policies of the administration or the way these policies are handled in our community. 

One student, a survivor of sexual harassment and physical assault on campus who chose to remain anonymous, voiced her frustration towards the administration for what she views as caring more about prestige and reputation than the welfare of victims of sexual misconduct. She said, “I would like Sarah Lawrence to completely forget about protecting the name, forget about their ego, forget about how many people they want to apply and increasing those numbers, saying 'this is a wonderful place to be' while ignoring all the things that students can do wrong. I want them to focus on their students' health.” The same student also said that the school acted against its own policies of confidentiality by sharing a document directed at her with the accused. “The administration just had me fill out papers—there was basically no emotional support,” she added, again expressing her concern and frustration that, in her view, students didn't get enough emotional support from the school last year.

Another student had been assaulted before coming to Sarah Lawrence, and felt that this school does a far better job than the vast majority of liberal arts schools out there, particularly her previous college.  “The reason I transferred here was because I heard that Sarah Lawrence handled these things better,” she said. “I was raped at my previous college and Sarah Lawrence was very sympathetic with everything that happened and my old school wanted me off school property.” The student voiced the need to realize that sexual assault on campus is a national problem, pointing out that she knew many others who have had similar experiences at other liberal arts colleges. She remarked, “At my previous college, I was not offered therapy, I was not offered a Dean to talk to, I was not offered police services, I was not offered anything. Sarah Lawrence has better policies in place for that, from what I've been told.” It is of note that she was sexually harassed this year by another student at Sarah Lawrence. She told us the harasser was dealt with immediately by security and her friends, as well as given a no-contact order, which she claims has been extremely effective. When asked if she felt safe on campus, the student replied that she felt relatively safe, but that, “there are certain people back on campus that make a lot of people very uncomfortable.”

The issue of sexual misconduct becomes even more daunting considering the Department of Education's investigation into Sarah Lawrence’s adherence to Title IX, a law passed in 1972 which requires “gender equity for boys and girls in every educational program that receives federal funding.” The Dean of Studies and Student Life, Allen Green, reported that the investigation is still inconclusive, and that the administration expects a response from the Department next month. The Dean also said that even the complaint is unknown to the school, as the law does not allow it to be known if the administration even requested it. 

Solutions to these problems are not so easy to formulate. The Dean expressed his deep concern about student-on-student violence in the Sarah Lawrence Community, and said that, “there are no clear cut answers,” to calls for a comprehensive solution. The Dean acknowledged that, at the moment, the school policy is not set to change, and that he and his fellow administrators want to “keep as many ideas on the table as possible” before considering making any decisions about modifying what's on the books. In other words, the Dean said, the students should be able to voice their concerns more effectively to the administration, and stated that “Asking students what they want is the best policy.” He also emphasized heavily that times are changing, referring specifically to “the changes of gender itself” and how we ought to think about gender differently in today's world, especially too when discussing the issue of sexual assault. “I want us to think critically about the different parts of our policy to see if they pass the litmus test,” he stated, “We should periodically look at policies and procedures to examine their relevancy.” 

Two issues the Dean found especially in need of re-examination were the policy's application to grad students, about 99% of which live off-campus, as well as the treatment of transgender women who are victims of assault, considering having been assigned male at birth and potentially having male legal documentation only. Green stressed that “we need to do a lot of self-reflection” before any amendments are to be made, lauding open discussion and the critical thinking of students, faculty, and administration as a community. 

In fact, the Dean and  President of the College Karen Lawrence held a campus wide meeting on Sept. 18 in the Reisinger Auditorium. A handful of students, faculty, and administrators attended, but no more than thirty. The meeting was very much an open-forum where all members of the school, almost exclusively students, asked questions and made many suggestions. In particular, the Dean outlined the school's new online sexual violence and consent program mandatory for incoming freshmen. There was another all-campus meeting on Oct. 1. Fewer than 30 people showed up, including mostly students, but also faculty and administrators. The meeting was, again, an open forum, with Dean Green and Dina Nunziato of Health Services outlining Campus Alerts in particular, and attendees asking questions throughout.The next all-campus meeting will be on Oct. 13 at 3 p.m. in the Donnelley Auditorium. 

The Dean expressed the administration's interest in having students bring forth as many suggestions as possible, especially students who “are aware of other institutions that may inform what we're doing.” Interestingly, he mentioned the importance of having “performances” and other “multi-media ways to address these issues”, stressing also the need for a faster form of communication, perhaps social media, to enhance students' role in making policies more effective and fostering a safe campus environment. 

Some students, however, think the school should be focusing less on effectively implementing the official policy and more on dealing with those who have sexually assaulted other students. One student said that for those convicted of sexual misconduct or assault “there's no process in place to reform their behavior before they come back on campus; there's nothing they have to do in order to understand what they've done. Although I appreciate they're respecting the boundaries of the survivor, they're still letting someone who is unsafe back on campus...there's no rehabilitation of the perpetrators.” Another student noticed that while the school mandates programming for those who drink too much, there is nothing similar for those who have sexually hurt or harassed others on campus. 

Despite these thoughts, the school may be doing more and considering more than at first glance. Health Services in particular has put up dozens of posters around campus outlining what to do if one is sexually assaulted, and has made information accessible by going to or even Dina Nunziato, the Director of Counseling and Psychological services, addressed her own concern, and the concern of many other staffers at Health Services, that procedures meant to help victims are having a reverse effect. She stated, “We want listening meetings. We want to hear from students about how to receive and perceive alerts, which are really designed to make students feel safe, are actually raising anxiety, and misinformation starts to get communicated.” She also stressed that the sexual assault liaison, once distanced from victims seeking immediate support, now directs students straight to Victim's Services. She informed that rape kits cannot be provided on campus because it would be tampering with forensic evidence if any case were appealed to police. Dina Nunziato also said that the biggest complaint of victims was that they often had to repeat their story too many times, especially if going through the Yonkers Police Department. 

Nunziato, much like Dean Green, spoke to the changes in society as initiatives to a new school approach to sexual assault. She observed, “Awareness has changed. There is an increase in awareness as to what constitutes sexual violence and what constitutes consent. Victim-blaming is shifting. Many victims are no longer blaming themselves as they used to.” The Director also said she is “hardpressed to say there is a decrease in safety. My sense is that this type of thing has been going on for a while among young people. But there is thankfully now a greater awareness of what constitutes as consent.”

Students Against Sexual Violence and Dangers of a Single Narrative, along with another unofficial student group, known simply as “the Green Guard,”  have made impressive leaps and bounds writing documents, organizing marches, and sitting in on important administrative meetings to make their messages heard. 

Unfortunately, most of the members of Students Against Sexual Violence have graduated and their meetings have been either absent or infrequent since the beginning of the summer. Most of the group’s meetings were of great help to survivors, who could report their stories to other students anonymously. Not to mention, the group acted as an organizing vanguard for student action related to changing sexual assault policies. 

Dangers of a Single Narrative, on the other hand, still meets regularly. The Co-chair of this student organization, Nathara Bailey ‘15, said that the group was started because it was felt that the administration was ignoring the issue of sexual assault, or the intersectionality of identities within the framework of sexual violence, such as race, national origin, and sexuality. She told us, “There were times where I felt like I had to choose whether I was going to be black or I was going to be a woman, and that was disturbing to me because I can't rip the two apart. They inform each other.” She said she appreciates the meetings the school has undertaken to make more frequent, but that she, similarly to the majority of those interviewed, would prefer if these mandatory.  

With one more meeting left and the conclusion of a federal investigation to go, we could not ask for a more inconclusive situation. Sarah Lawrence students, faculty, administrators, and general staff await the answers this semester is bound to bring, but those answers may not be as simple as they want or expect. Perhaps many are left with the sense that we all need to act as a community, as well as the feeling that this problem is larger than our campus. The Dean expressed this sentiment well, stating “We are striving to hold our students to higher standards than civil society, so that they can be models to change the paradigm in which we live.” Or perhaps as a student put it, “We should be focusing not just on education, but on how to make a decent person in society.”

by Aviya Eschenazi '15



Get involved this year with one of SLC's student-run organizations

Photo Credits: Mayra Hidalgo Salazar '14 and Manuela Barreneche '14 at the United We Dream Congress in Phoenix, Arizona last year, which four Sarah Lawrence for Immigration Advocacy members attended. The photo was taken by Emily Ptak-Pressman.

Photo Credits: Mayra Hidalgo Salazar '14 and Manuela Barreneche '14 at the United We Dream Congress in Phoenix, Arizona last year, which four Sarah Lawrence for Immigration Advocacy members attended. The photo was taken by Emily Ptak-Pressman.

In the frenzy of finding out roommate assignments and first-year studies placements and anxiously awaiting orientation week events, course registration and dorm life, it is easy to forget that the process of building a fulfilling and enriching college experience does not end outside the seminar room or residence hall. At Sarah Lawrence, the learning process can take many forms, and there are many ways in which students can get involved and make their mark on the college community.

Students at SLC can choose from a wide range of ways to get involved in student activities, including becoming a part of the Student Senate or the Sarah Lawrence Activities Council (SLAC), managing student spaces, joining college committees, or, most commonly, joining clubs and student organizations.

SLC has over 90 student organizations, each with their own purpose, mission and set of goals. Some are focused more on activism, while others more on the arts, with most built on unique combinations of various different topics. Organizations such as the Feminist Collective, the Queer Voice Coalition (QVC), Students Against Sexual Violence, Trans Action, SLC Workers Justice, and Sarah Lawrence for Immigration Advocacy, are social justice-oriented, and aim to provide safe spaces for support, discussion, education and advocacy. Many of these organizations take part in rallies, attend conferences, and organize campus-wide events.

“The main mission of SLC for Immigration Advocacy is to work with members of the SLC community and Yonkers and NYC communities to organize around immigrant justice,” said members Carolyn Martinez-Class ‘17 and Leyana Dessauer ‘17. “During the ‘13-’14 school year we met with SLC administrators, who agreed to incorporate inclusive language in the school’s website, stating that SLC welcomes all students regardless of their citizenship status, and will try to meet accepted student’s financial needs. This means that Sarah Lawrence joins the growing group of colleges that publicly welcome undocumented students.” Martinez-Class, who is the elected chair of the organization, added, “Sarah Lawrence for Immigration Advocacy has taught me about the power of the collective. Throughout the 2013-2014 school year, so many things were accomplished by pooling our individual strengths together.”

Sarah Lawrence is also home to various identity groups and cultural/faith-based clubs. Harambee is an organization for Black students and their allies at SLC to discuss issues surrounding Black identities and culture at weekly meetings and promote dialogue throughout the college campus. UNIDAD is a similar organization that provides a safe space for the Latino/a community at SLC. Faith-based groups such as the Sarah Lawrence Christian Union (SLCU) and Hillel@SLC, and cultural clubs such as the Italian Club, the Japanese Culture Club, and the Chinese Table, are also open to interested students.

Student publications on campus cater to various different interests, and publish a wide scope of student work, ranging from journalism to literary pieces to visual art. The Sarah Lawrence Literary Review is an annual literary publication at SLC that accepts submissions of fiction, non-fiction, poetry and visual art. Gina Iaquinta ’15 and Lucy Dunphy Barsness ’17, who will be Co-Editors-in-Chief of the Review during the upcoming school year, said, “Our goals [for the new year] can be summarized by the descriptor, ‘more.’ Ultimately, we want to accomplish more of everything: more events and readings, more advertisement and visibility, more student involvement, etc.” Other student publications include Dark Phases, which is an annual literary journal that publishes poetry, prose and visual work by students, faculty, and staff of color, The SLC Visual Art Review, The SLC Annual, which is the yearbook, and, of course, The Phoenix.

Other organizations and clubs on campus include everything from the Spoken Word Collective, which holds weekly open mics for student poets to perform and listen to other students’ work, to The Melancholy Players, which is a non-departmental theatre company on campus. Other clubs such as Enviro-Earth, an organization in which students teach lessons and assist with programs that are part of an environmental/garden-based education club for children and teens in Yonkers, go beyond the SLC campus and work with the larger community.

Despite the diverse selection of student organizations to join, if you have an idea for an organization that does not already exist, starting one is very simple. All you need to do is get together with one other person, fill out the Student Organization Registration Form, and submit it to the Office of Student Affairs, after which Student Senate will contact you about coming to a meeting to approve the organization.


As for joining clubs that are already registered student organizations, an annual Club Fair is held during orientation week where you can get more information, so remember to attend! Looking back on her experiences as an Enviro-Earth club member during the past school year, Sofia Seidel ’17 said, “I would recommend this club or any other volunteer group to any first-year who is feeling too involved in their own work. It’s important to be part of larger work as well.” This sentiment can hold true for any type of student group, and when you look through the student organization list this Fall, remember to try to expand your horizons. Along with joining clubs focused on topics that you have knowledge about, try to step out of your comfort zone a little and join something that you are unfamiliar with. You never know what you might end up being interested in!

This year’s club fair will take place on September 6th from 4:30-6:00PM on the North Lawn. Come check out The Phoenix’s table!

by Janaki Chadha '17
News Editor

Check out all of SLC's awesome Student Organizations! Full List from 2013-2014 school year (taken from

The 24 hour Shakespeare Marathon
Mission: Each semester they aim to lead students in performing as many Shakespeare plays as possible in 24 hours, culminating in Hamlet

Alternate Shades
Mission: Welcome to Alternate Shades! We are driven to create fun, insightful events on and off campus. We plan to bridge campus life with that of New York City & all it offers. If you're into social justice, culture, art, & a deep intellectual vibe you want to be involved with Alternate Shades. Our shared & created experiences meet culturally aware & diverse ones!

Alternative Spring Break
Email: N/A
Mission: Each year a group of SLC students fundraise in order to spend a week of their spring break doing a community service project.

American Chemical Society Student Chapter
Mission: The Sarah Lawrence student chapter of the American Chemical Society aims to spark an interest in chemistry at SLC and within the Yonkers community at large. Through a variety of educational events and service projects (particularly those that promote green chemistry) for the campus, K-12, and general communities, we hope to shed light on the vital role chemistry plays in our everyday lives and in the longevity of our environment. Additionally, we wish to provide professional development opportunities to prepare and encourage those students considering a career in chemistry or related fields.

American Sign Language Club
Mission: American Sign Language club strives to learn and practice communication through American Sign Language. ASL is not offered through Sarah Lawrence's curricular classes, and the ASL club feels that it is still extremely important to have on campus. We hope to expand our ability to communicate with the deaf population, which is an important part of this world.

The Annual Rocky Horror Picture Show Production
Mission: The Annual Rocky Horror Picture Show Production aims to put on a fun and sexy shadow-cast production of the cult classic film "The Rocky Horror Picture Show" the weekend of Halloween, guaranteed to thrill you, chill you, and fulfill you. Rocky is an amazing experience, a wild adventure in fishnets, lip-synching, cross-dressing, and body-positive silliness. Everyone is welcome to audition and no acting or dancing experience is required whatsoever!

Body Art
Mission: Body Art is a student collective that promotes self-love and self-worth for one's body

Email: N/A
Mission: Bookworms is a club that provides a safe space for students to come to and enjoy the pleasure of reading. We encourage members bring in non-academic reading material and enjoy an hour of unwinding, relaxing, and tea-drinking fun.

Mission: Brainwashed is a group of individuals who are passionate about both the psychology and biology of the brain. We will approach the exploration of the brain based on our interests, learning about the diverse effects of all activities from dance to psychiatry while focusing on everything from ethical issues to philosophical issues. This is a space in which we can learn about the brain by reviewing groundbreaking research through dialogue and interactive activities. A major goal of this group is to provide a platform in which individuals can pursue initiatives in an interdisciplinary context to spread our knowledge of the brain to the rest of the community in ways that will improve how we see and interact with the world.

Burlesque Fitness Club
Mission: Burlesque fitness's mission is to be a space for body positivity, both physical and mental, through which members explore the art of burlesque. Group leaders help foster a safe space for exploration within the art of burlesque, allowing members to create burlesque characters and numbers. The group will also address important issues surrounding body positivity and conduct check ins with the group to see if there are any issues. Burlesque Fitness would like to encourage a more open dialogue about burlesque in the Sarah Lawrence community, and the benefits of a body positive community.

Café Latino
Mission: Bienvenidos! Café Latino is an organization of Hispanic students who seek to promote the Spanish language and Hispanic culture. We are primarily a safe space for students who would like to dialogue about their experiences as bilingual, bi-cultural human beings in a world that operates on defnited labels. However, we also strive to connect and engage with the Sarah Lawrence Community, opening our space to college faculty and staff, non-native speakers, and any member of the SLC population with an interest in our language and diverse latino cultures. Through campus-wide events and discussions we hope to promote awareness, knowledge and understanding, firm in our belief that a deeper connection between our ethnic community and the diverse SLC community as a whole will result in cultural enrichment on both sides.

The Capoeira Collective
Mission: The Capoeira Collective aims to provide quality and accessible Capoeira programming (classes, rodas, workshops, field trips, lectures and film screenings) to the Sarah Lawrence Community. We work to use the philosophy and practice of Capoeira to promote community and generate discussion around issues of social justice and community concern. We work to provide opportunities for community members to grow and build with each other through the study of Capoeira. The Capoeira Collective works collaboratively with FICA New York, the Brooklyn-based non-profit study group of the International Capoeira Angola Foundation.

Chinese Table
Mission: Since last year, Chinese Table had become an official student organization, with the fundamental goal of offering the SLC community a chance to get to know both Chinese culture and Chinese language better in a conversational setting. In addition to the weekly meeting at Bates Faculty Dining Hall, events will be launched at occasions such as traditional Chinese festivals, culture events in the city (e.g. film screening, traditional Chinese theater), etc. In addition, Chinese table will give Chinese students an equal chance to experience the genuine American culture.

Sarah Lawrence Christian Union (SLCU)
Mission: Sarah Lawrence Christian Union is an authentic community that is about changing lives as we get to know who God is and aspire to serve the campus. We're not just for Christians, but for anyone to bring honest questions to explore God and faith. We host community engagement events, social outreach programs, and a weekly van to a nondenominational church in NYC.

Mission: We embrace the incomplete. What exactly does that mean? Here we like it short and sweet. The Cliffhanger designates a space for the so-called in-between. This experimental pocket-sized zine is the parenthetical limbo of creativity. Finally there is a home for the underdeveloped, those rootless shards of verse, sketches-in-progress. The interlude of consciousness, so to half-speak. Simplicity. Brevity. Here the fleeting or still-born ideas may retreat. (Mid-sneeze!) Submit your bits of dialogue, micro fiction, run-on sentences that cling to suspense or nonsense, and fragments of poetry. You get it. Postcard riddles. Broken refrains that end far too…

Comic Book Club
Email: N/A
Mission: We want to create the comics club in order to have an environment for students to share comics that they both create and read. Here students will also be able to aid others in their journey by editing each other’s work. Readers of all genre are welcome, from indie to mainstream, to share what they love with others.

Creative Arts Thinking Space (C.A.T.S)
Email: N/A
Mission: The Creative Arts Thinking Space is a student-run arts collectibe focused on exposing, engaging, and encouraging the artistic community on the Sarah Lawrence campus. Our primary goals are to facilitate discussion about student work and promote cross-disciplinary collaboration that will initiate the development of a self-sustaining community. Through monthly student-curated shows, themed collaborative events, installations around campus and collaborations with other campus organizations, we establish a means of bringing student work to all students. The monthly shows will be led by a rotating group of student curators who choose a theme and organize the show with the help of a C.A.T.S administrative staff. We also host student-led critiques that enable a critical discussion of student work outside of classes, exposing students to new mediums and new perspectives. Through talks from practicing artists, workshops, and field trips to museums, galleries, and other arts institutions we can connect our community of Sarah Lawrence artist to the larger art world in New York City.

Dance Collective
Mission: We want to create a dance collective that gives students an outlet to get together and work on various forms of dance together. The group will be hip hop based but will be open to students and choreography from all types of dance. The group will meet to train and choreograph together.

SLC Dance Team
Email: N/A
Mission: Our mission is solely to promote dance here at SLC and bring school spirit. We are here to dance the night away using all genres of dance and most importantly to have fun.

Dangers Of A Single Narrative
Email: N/A
Mission: We, Dangers of a Single Narrative Collective, are in solidarity with members of the Sarah Lawrence Community who are consistently working for a fuller realization of a safe community. This committee is comprised of students who are concerned about the lack of community engagement with the multiplicities of inequality, exclusion and lack of safe space to speak of race and sexual assault without dismissing and silencing others voices. This collective and the members of the Sarah Lawrence community who support our mission and demands seek to affect tangible and concrete change within the Sarah Lawrence College Community.

Dark Phrases
Mission: It is though we whisper to only ourselves when we speak. It is as though we bite out bottom lip with each pulse of our blood. We have long been unheard though we have never been silent. We have long existed in a world which refuses to hear us, but we refuse to forsake our own voices, our own survival. This is the language of unuttering darkness, the syntax of our own empowerment, the flesh and spirit enwombed and born in these phrases

Sarah Lawrence Speech & Debate Club
Mission: The SLC Speech & debate club is an organization that allows students to create and perform their own theatrical or informative pieces in a competitive environment. Students essentially cast themselves, becoming their own writers, directors, and producers. The team will travel to tournaments and compete with schools in the surrounding areas in events such as Prose, Poetry, Dramatic Interpretation, Persuasive Speaking, and Rhetorical Criticism.

SLC Democrats
Mission: The Sarah Lawrence College Democrats are devoted to Democratic values, The Democratic Party, its ideals, and to helping Democratic candidates across the country win elections. We encourage all students to register and vote, no matter their political affiliation. We encourage students to control their future by engaging in the political process. We aim to create an open space for all students to discuss their beliefs. As Democrats, we fight for those that don't have a voice of their own and we hope to shape a better future for all Americans.

SLC Development Collective
Mission: The Development Collective hosts the annual Undergraduate Development and Post Colonial Studies Conference that allows students from all over the country to present their original research. It is an organization that encourages critical discussions.

Disability Alliance
Mission: Disability Alliance is dedicated to advocating for accessibility and respect on campus for people with disabilities. We are working to raise awareness of disability issues and build a community of students with disabilities and allies.

Endangered Species Advocacy
Email: N/A
Mission: We are excited to promote Endangered Species Awareness throughout our campus. No weekly meetings just fun events every few months.

Mission: The Enviro Earth Club is the Sarah Lawrence College wing of an environmental and garden based education club for children and teens in downtown Yonkers. The club, which is run by Lucy Cassanova-Moreno and sponsored by the Greyston Foundation is based (weather permitting) in a community garden on Buena Vista Avenue. Enviro Earth members from SLC plan and teach lessons and facilitate programs relating to environmental science, and reading comprehension as well as forming strong positive personal relationships with younger people and actively engaging with a community of people.

Feminist Collective
Mission: The feminist collective is dedicated to discussion, education and activism. It is the goal of the co-chairs to create and maintain a safe space for feminists to explore the past, present and future of feminism in conjunction with our own experiences as feminists. We believe in a feminism that is diverse, intersectional and inclusive.

SLC Figure Drawing Club
Mission: The SLC Figure Drawing Club is a space and time dedicated to providing an informal space for artistic growth both for visual art and non-visual art students on campus. While students have access to a live model it is also an opportunity for student volunteers to have artistic modeling experience and as a part of our mission, we are dedicated to fostering the creative community and network at SLC.

Film Networking Cooperative
Mission: The purpose of the Film Networking Cooperative is to facilitate collaboration between students interested in Directing, Producing, Screenwriting, Animation, and Production (Editing, Light & Sound Design, and Camera Operation) and provide outlets for success. We seek to inform these filmmaking students and the broader community (Actors, Musicians, Dancers, Writers and other Visual Artists) about film projects that are being developed by Sarah Lawrence students and that need the assistance of students in on or more of these fields in order to be fully realized.

SLC Folk Club
Mission: The SLC Folk Club aims to support a community of folk music makers and lovers. We arrange the yearly Folk Festival in Slonim Living Room, pairing well-known musicians and groups from around the country with student and local musicians. We will do our best to increase the presence of a warm, loving, and awesome music community on the Sarah Lawrence campus, and also the presence of our famous baklava.

SLC Food Co-op
Email: N/A
Mission: We want to gather students to cook, eat, and discuss food issues together. We aim to provide more food from just and sustainable sources on campus. (We will elaborate this statement later in the year, with input from our members)

Global Activism Through the Arts
Mission: Global Activism Through the Arts is committed to creating awareness for the SLC community and public about different human rights issues around the world especially in New York through the arts (which includes all types of visual and performance art as well as creative writing), conversation, publications and events. Our mission is to help the SLC community and the public to see that they can help end these issues in New York and around the world through art and volunteering. We want to connect SLC students to Non-profit organizations and artists/activists in New York. This includes volunteering and bringing art to those affected by different social issues of poverty, health, education, human trafficking, environment, etc.

Mission: Harambee provides a safe space for Black students and their allies on the SLC campus to explore all different expressions of Blackness. There will be weekly discussion meetings in addition to an array of programming that examines various aspects of Black culture. While we encourage dialogue surrounding Black identities and race, discussions are not limited to such topics. We encourage members to bring ideas and themes to explore. Everyone is welcome!

Harts for Hope
Mission: Our mission is to promote biopsychosocial healing in a creative, interactive manner. We believe in healing rather than treating. The mind and body are two wonders that work together, and utilizing arts as a way to bridge them is our overall objective. We work with persons of all ages, ill and not ill, and persons of all cultures. We want to bring the whole picture of healing and promote it to the people we work with.

Health & Science for Kids’ Afterschool Program
Mission: This club connects Sarah Lawrence students with local elementary school students to discuss health topics and do simple science experiments. Our primary aim is to work with elementary school students in Yonkers to develop the skills necessary for peer education. More concretely, we want to give students the resources to educate their friends about health issues in their lives, as well as basic science topics.

Hillel @ SLC
Mission: The mission of Hillel@SLC is to support its Jewish population. Hillel@SLC welcomes everyone to explore Judaism throughout the year, while also providing opportunities to learn about Israel, Jewish Spirituality, Torah, and Social Justice.

Home Movies: The Sarah Lawrence Film Journal
Email: N/A
Mission: Film history cannot be said to end in the last century. More and more exciting, inspiring and independent works from the most vibrant and alive of art forms are coming out regularly, not just from America but from all over the world. With The Sarah Lawrence College Film Review, we aim to showcase film's past and present with all the excitement that comes with it. We hope to make a website and hopefully also physical journal full of great articles, interviews, reviews, artworks, film recommendations and all kinds of other film related miscellany from the Sarah Lawrence community. As well, we plan to host film screenings on campus and create a revitalized and active film community at Sarah Lawrence.
Iglesia Scholars: The Saturday Enrichment Program at Iglesia San Andres
Mission: The mission of the Iglesia Scholars program is to provide a weekly curriculum, designed by students, to provide avenues for program participants to develop relationships, discover creative outlets, and become lifelong learners. Our goal is to make learning fun, approachable and easy.

Sarah Lawrence for Immigration Advocacy
Mission: Our goal is to organize & advocate for the immigrant community as the opportunity for immigration reform grows near.

International Students Union (ISU)
Mission: The International Students Union is a student group that seeks to nurture cultural diversity and awareness on campus, complementing the Sarah Lawrence educational philosophy of "experiential learning." We endeavor to create a compact community where all members are able to exchange and appreciate international experiences and perspectives; as well as help solve issues concerning the international community on campus. Last, but most importantly we hope to make Sarah Lawrence your new home!

Italian Club
Mission: The Italian Club seeks to expose Sarah Lawrence students to the Italian language, culture and history, through film screenings, events and conversations with native Italian speakers. It aims to create a place for people that have studied or lace to study in Italy, people currently studying the language and anyone interested in learning about the culture in general.

Japanese Culture Club
Email: N/A
Mission: The mission is to immerse the students of SLC in Japanese cultural and enriching experiences. Attending Local events, scheduling field trips, creating informative newsletters, and inviting inspirational guest to campus are just some of the various things we wish to accomplish this year. We strive to build communal bridges of cultural understanding between our students and the people of japan.

Just Dance!
Email: N/A
Mission: Sarah Lawrence is a college with a wonderful dance program, and yet students outside of this program rarely experience movement. We walk by studios filled with sweaty moving bodies, but are rarely invited inside and more importantly do not consider entering. And yet, even the simplest movement holds the power to transform. People who move, who dance, feel better, discover different parts of themselves and connect with others in new and profound ways. Movement is a language unto itself, transcending spoken words while providing a means to expression and communication. Given these facts, we feel something radical is needed for our bodies and our campus. We want to bring accessible, joyous, judgement-free, movement to the entire Sarah Lawrence community. Our mission is to create an at-least-weekly movement hour that is open and accessible to anyone who is willing to risk finding movement in their body. We want dancers, first-time dancers and those might call themselves non-dancers when they first join. We want students, faculty and staff. Through a combination of dance, mindfulness and creative exercises we aim to create something enriching for this community and all its members. Won't you join us?

Kamikazes Anonymous
Mission: Kamikazes Anonymous exists to bring nerds from all corners of SLC together to bond over epic sword fights, ridiculous hair-styles and of course giant robots. Our mission is to make the campus of SLC aware of how awesome it is to be a card carrying geek and enjoy one another’s company while yelling at fictional Japanese people on the screen. We intend to rock hard.

Keeper Of The Bees
Email: N/A
Mission: Our mission is to raise awareness on campus of problems facing bee populations today such as colony collapse disorder, and the agricultural consequences we face therein, while caring for and maintain hives of our own here on campus. We also aim to advocate for more bee-friendly vegetation be introduced to the campus grounds.

Kung-Fu Klub
Email: N/A
Mission: We want to bring our love of kung fu films to the SLC community. We believe that it is every student's right to enjoy the best adrenaline-pumping, lightning-striking, fire-blazing kung fu on the big screen. For this exact reason, we will be hosting bi-monthly screenings of the legends.

Language Partnerships
Email: N/A
Mission: Language acquisition is a challenge—whether it is one's first language or seventh. Through a partnership with the SLC Operations and Facilities Office, volunteers teach English lessons to participating members of the Sarah Lawrence community.

Email: N/A
Mission: LARPers' Union's goal is to rekindle the spirit of childhood in a productive, team-building way that allows for stress release through fantasy reenactment.

Lend Me Your Years
Email: N/A
Mission: To give the Sarah Lawrence, Bronxville and surrounding communities exposure to a classical education, composed of Latin, Greek and Classical Literature.

Email: N/A
Mission: LUMINA's mission is simple: to provide a venue for both emerging and established writers and visual artists to tell goods stories and to feature great writing and great art. Every year, a new editorial staff sets the tone and direction for the annual publication. This practice allows the journal to stay continually alert to new developments in the field of writing and the arts, along with the freedom to go in any direction the tastes and curiosity of the staff suggest. LUMINA was established in 2000 in association with Sarah Lawrence College. It is run entirely by graduate student volunteers in the MFA Writing Program. We welcome unsolicited manuscripts in fiction, non-fiction, poetry and graphic narrative, as well as collaborative ventures with other areas of the arts--visual art, dance notation, sheet music, streams of choreography or audio--from emerging artists to appear in print or online alongside the work of established artists and writers. We have featured writers such as John Barr, Tao Lin, Jenny Boully, Kenneth Calhoun, Seth Fried, Cathy Park Hong, Rick Moody, Anne-E Wood, Dorothy Allison, David Sheilds, Susan Orlean, Natalie Angier, Verlyn Klinkenborg, Paula Fox, Suzanne Gardinier, and many others who have gone on to acclaim after first appearing in LUMINA.

Mission: Mabuhay is a student-run group formed to unite those of Filipino heritage and encourage cultural exploration through forms such as culinary arts and dance. The organization creates a foundation for relationships amongst those who share similar cultural roots yet have different experiences of the role that the Filipino culture has played in their lives.

Martial Arts Students Teaching Effective and Realistic Skills (MASTERS)
Email: N/A
Mission: Our goal as a club is to teach and discuss the values such as courage, humility, perseverance, and respect that are passionately practiced in various martial arts. As co-chairs, Mike and I teach American karate and judo but we welcome all martial arts. Through teaching various techniques, strength exercises, and conditioning exercises, we like to create a balance between fitness and the philosophies of martial arts. Expect to sweat and leave with a deeper understanding of martial arts and sore bodies.

The Melancholy Players
Mission: Established in 2006, The Melancholy Players is the longest running student produced, non-departmental theatre company on campus. We are a group of artists, producers, directors, performers, playwrights, technicians, and designers who hope to achieve a common goal of theatre dedicated to equality, community, and creativity. Our plays often highlight the poetics and lyricism of language, and are interested in the female experience. Our productions are both student written and published works, straight plays and musicals, classic and contemporary, all performed on campus in traditional and non-traditional theatre spaces. We adhere to a strict policy of inclusion and kindness.

Men’s Naked Shakespeare
Mission: To explore and perform Shakespeare’s text in its rawest form so as to open the door for new textual possibilities for the benefit and entertainment of the student body.

Midnight Cabaret
Mission: Midnight Cabaret fosters a lively dialogue between artists of all kinds through a high-energy, fast-paced process of production that happens every week. The group can change every single week and consists inclusively of visual artists, designers, musicians, actors, dancers, and writers who meet with the goal of collaborating to create a new show. The group meets throughout the week to discuss and workshop pieces for the upcoming show. Members can also work outside of these meetings either alone or together in order to finalize projects. The show itself is a series of pieces. Pieces can include any combination of performers, dependent only on the restraints of time and on the members of the cast. The group tries to explore different ways of thinking about the relationships between the various art forms, in order to challenge the very labels that separate them. Additionally, Midnight Cabaret takes on larger projects that embody in larger scopes the values it expresses in every weekly show.

Model United Nations
Mission: The objective of Model UN is to seek, through discussion, negotiation and debate, solutions to the various problems of the world: e.g. questions of human rights, protection of the environment, economic development, disarmament, the problems of youth and of refugees, as well as the more critical issues of war and peace. Delegates, in seeking solutions to these problems, can learn to break away from narrow, national self-interest and develop true international cooperation. The research and preparation required, the adoption of views and attitudes other than their own, the involvement and interaction with so many other students from around the world, all combine to provide a deep insight into the world's problems, to make students aware of the causes of conflict between nations and to lead them to a better understanding of the interests and motivations of others. Thus, MUN, through its conferences, attempts to fulfill the aims and goals set by founders of the United Nations in the Preamble to the Charter of the United Nations: "to practice tolerance and live together in peace with one another as good as neighbors."

Outdoor Club
Email: N/A
Mission: Providing the opportunity for students to engage in and interact with nature through the participation of various hosted outdoor activities

People Eating Tasty Animals (PETA)
Mission: We stand for your right to eat meat! Through the art of eating animals we seek to establish a strong foundation of enthusiastic carnivores within the SLC community. Our cookouts are free for all and we guarantee you leave a little more sated than when you came. Stay hungry friends.

The PHIL Project
Mission: The PHIL Project is philanthropy for students by students. Working with the SLC Student body, the PHIL project educates the college campus about giving back inspiring an excitement for students fund-raising while simultaneously providing valuable experiences and opportunities to learn about philanthropy at SLC

The Phoenix
Mission: The Phoenix is a student run newspaper that provides the students faculty and staff of SLC with up to date news, feature stories and editorials that are relevant to the SLC community.

Pre-Veterinary Collective
Mission: The Sarah Lawrence College Pre Veterinary Collective was designed to assist students considering applying to veterinary schools. We also aim to provide opportunities for interested students to gain experience working with animals. We assist students interested in applying to veterinary school to further understand the required coursework & recommend experience in order to have the absolute best chance at getting into their top choice graduate programs. We are open to students who are not necessarily pursuing pre-vet, yet would like to gain animal experience through volunteering.

Queer Voice Coalition (QVC)
Mission: The SLC Queer Voice Coalition seeks to provide a safe space for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Questioning, Intersex, and Allied students, as well as to provide information and events to the wider student population surrounding LGBTQQIA issues.

Reading Buddies
Mission: Reading Buddies is an organization of student volunteers who are dedicated to creating a relationship between Sarah Lawrence College and the greater Yonkers community through tutoring kids between the ages of 5 and 10. We partner with the Iglesia Elementary School’s after school program, and volunteers are expected to pair up with one of the children to tutor throughout the semester. Reading Buddies not only offers a great opportunity to work on your communication skills while getting to know the surrounding community, but the children are thankful for the opportunity as well.

Rock Climbing Club
Email: N/A
Mission: The SLC Rock Climbing Club is dedicated to making sure that all Sarah Lawrence students have the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful sport of rock climbing. We provide thrice weekly transportation to and from the nearby "The Rock Club" climbing gym, and plan climbing trips in Upstate NYC.

Sarah Lawrence College Review
Mission: The Sarah Lawrence Review is the oldest running annual literary journal that provides an opportunity for writers and artists in the Sarah Lawrence College community to gain validation and exposure through publication in a high quality collection of works. We publish a wide range of literary and visual arts created by students, staff, faculty, and alumni. Our main objective is to showcase the exemplary talent of the Sarah Lawrence College writing community. We are entirely student run, and work hard throughout the year to solicit submissions for our magazine and to ultimately produce a tasteful and professional publication. Our staff, diverse in talent and committed to maintaining the standards of the Review, selects works in an unbiased and open-minded manner. We believe that the quality of the work in the Sarah Lawrence Review is comparable to any of the most widely circulated and respected literary magazines.

Sarah Lawrence Activities Council (SLAC)
Mission: SLAC is a student-run organization of volunteers who coordinate and plan a variety of weekly campus events including films, concerts, dances, and open mic nights. SLAC is comprised of two Co-Chairs, eight series, and general members. The Office of Student Activities serves as adviser to SLAC. Some SLAC events feature student performances, while other events feature outside musicians, speakers, or variety acts. The goal of SLAC is to host events that appeal to the interests of the student body. The SLAC members meet weekly to plan events and are always looking for feedback and new members.

Sarah Lawrence Quiz Association
Email: N/A
Mission: The Quiz Association seeks to hold a variety of intellectually stimulating general knowledge quiz competitions.

Scandal Revue
Mission: The Scandal Revue was founded to share our message of body positivity, sex positivity, and personal narrative through dance, striptease, song, comedy or whatever talents you've got. The troupe is part of the neo-burlesque movement that strives to bring burlesque dance and performance to the Sarah Lawrence community. We are open to all- come play with us!

Screen Writers Workshop
Mission: In order to write a well crafted screenplay, one must have access to a community of fellow screen writers who are willing to share their own work and offer constructive criticism to one another. This environment will be one that is welcoming and helpful rather than overly critical. Join if you are a screenwriter or simply have the drive.

Short and Sweet
Email: N/A
Mission: Short and Sweet is aimed at both theatre and non-theatre students. We intend to give theatre students the opportunity to showcase skills they perhaps aren't getting the chance to within the department (actors, lighting designers, set designers, sound designers, playwrights, puppeteers, directors, etc.) and also allow them to experiment with different aspects of theatrical experience- for instance, an actor who wants to try directing for the first time. We also intend to give students outside the theatre department, who do not have access to the proper venues, a chance to show work they intended for the stage.

Slam Poets; Reclaim Your Space
Mission: Slam Poets; Reclaim Your Space, Aims to give people a space to be more than spoken word and less than theater. Slam provides a safe space to memorize work, talk about issues in their work (Ex. Life, Classes, inside themselves) and have the ability to get up on various stages in the City to slam, to sing, to play an instrument and to do it with a group of interested, poets in training, veterans or newbies.

SLC ++
Email: N/A
Mission: SLC++ is Sarah Lawrence’s official computer science club. We will be hosting weekly programming sessions and occasional hackathons. Our goal is to build community within a traditionally underrepresented academic department at Sarah Lawrence by fostering a collaborative work environment. All computer science students, interactive media artists, and mathematicians with an interest in computation are encouraged to join and participate.

Songwriters Collective
Mission: In a city where competition between aspiring musicians is fueled by the cut-throat industry, we are forming a positive community of creation that inspires, encourages, and supports its members. Through workshops and showcases we will provide an environment where music is not only made, but also heard. The Songwriters Collective at Sarah Lawrence College bring together students who have any interest in creating music; whether you can sing, play an instrument or jot lyrics on the backs of napkins at coffee shops, may this group be a place where we can collaborate and simply jam like we've never jammed before!

SLC Speaks
Mission: SLC Speaks is a web-based, student run publication that brings together the voices of an individualized campus. We reach out to every social group and student with interesting, thoughtful content and creative presentation see our platform at

SLC Speech & Debate
Email: N/A
Mission: Love acting? Hate type-casting?
Create your own one-man performance using text from published literature, poetry, drama, and film. Compete at tournaments along the east coast. Hone your acting like never before — and play any (and every) character you’d like. No costumes. No set. Just you and your performance.

Spoken Word Collective
Mission: The Sarah Lawrence Spoken Word Collective exists in order to introduce the Sarah Lawrence community to outstanding voices from the contemporary spoken word and slam poetry movement and to further the dialogue between academic and slam poetry. We host weekly poetry open mics, each followed by a 30-40 minute performance by a new featured slam poet or spoken word artist from around the country. Students are welcome to read/perform either their own or someone's else poetry, and are also welcome to participate simply through listening. It is our goal for Spoken Word Collective to be a safe space for any and all students who would like to attend, and we ask all participants to please be aware of and attentive to the implications of their own work and presence in the space.

SLC Stitch ‘n Bitch
Mission: Stitch & Bitch aims to provide a welcoming and cathartic community where students can work on crafting projects (specifically knitting, but we welcome anyone making anything) and vent the pent up frustrations of SLC life to a (more or less) sympathetic audience.

Students against Sexual Violence
Email: N/A
Mission: Students Against Sexual Violence is a group committed to eradicating sexual violence on the Sarah Lawrence campus and in the world at large. We seek to raise awareness about sexual violence and to provide education on surrounding issues. We also aim to make campus a safer space for victims of sexual violence.

Students as Citizen Scientists
Mission: Citizen Science or crowd-sourced science refers to the practice of opening research to the public and enabling the general population to make meaningful contributions to our understanding of the world around us. These projects range from simple, such observing the water quality of rivers, to complex, such as building a functional solar panel testing module out of LEGO parts and an inkjet printer. Students as Citizen Scientists will bring both of these projects and more to the Sarah Lawrence campus. We will also coordinate with other Sarah Lawrence groups to involve more students in projects relating to those groups goals.

Student Microfinance Chapter
Email: N/A
Mission: Our mission is to empower student leaders to build strong ties with their surrounding communities by helping disadvantaged individuals start and grow businesses, develop assets etc. through microfinance.

Swing Dance Club
Email: TBD
Mission: Some students know how to swing dance, some don't. Our club provides a venue for students of all skill levels to swing dance and to meet people who share their enthusiasm for the craft.

Table Salt
Mission: Table Salt is a student made, student run campus zine devoted to compiling the creative works, findings, musings and inspirations of Sarah Lawrence students (and occasionally others). Mostly black and white and assembled with some scissors, tape, and glue, the zine aims to access the sort of things people tend to keep tucked away in notebooks or floating around in their heads. Unfinished projects, odds and ends, scraps and scribbles--we'll pretty much take anything.

The Annual (Yearbook)
Mission: The SLC Annual desires to compile a book of memories for students to take with them and keep long after their time here is done. Our vision is to capture the daily life of the community and all of the beautiful scenery in which these events take place. We aim to have every aspect of the student life noted and preserved.

Terse Tales
Mission: Terse Tales is a literary club dedicated to out-loud readings of classic short stories. Each meeting is devoted to a single writer. Writers under consideration for future meetings include, but are not limited to, Aesop, Anderson, Irving, Poe, Hawthorne, Melville, Twain, James, Wharton, Fitzgerald, O’Conner, Bradbury, Dickens, Proust, Kafka, Joyce, Mann, Lawrence, Mansfield, Tolstoy, Gogol, Chekov, Dostoyevsky, Nabokov, and de Maupassant.

Trans Action
Mission: Trans*Action is a Sarah Lawrence College club that focuses on creating a trans* activist space on campus. This club is intended for trans* and gender varient folks on campus but all are welcome.

Trans Space
Mission: Trans* Space serves as a support group for transgender, genderqueer, and other gender-non-conforming people and their allies. Our primary goal is to provide a "safe" space for trans* people to share their experiences around their gender identity as well as how that identity intersects with other identities. In addition, non-trans* or genderqueer (cis) people are encouraged to attend and discuss their experiences with gender and experiences with the trans* community.

Transfer Connection
Mission: The mission of The Transfer Connection is to bring a greater level of engagement between all who have transferred into SLC Transfer Connection Club will provide transferred into SLC. We’ll provide support, transfer specific events and guest appearances from important people on campus that will aid in acclimation. Furthermore, transfer friendly allies are more than welcome to attend if they want.

Treble in Paradise
Mission: Treble in Paradise is SLC's only female a Capella group. The group seeks to provide members with not only the opportunity to perform and arrange music, but also to be a part of a diverse community of talented musicians.

Mission: UNIDAD is a safe space for the Latino/a community at Sarah Lawrence and its allies to dialogue about identity and empower our communities through knowledge and support. We are a resource of unity, support, and solidarity to any students wanting to discuss issues relevant to the racialization and marginalization of our community on campus as well as in the United States more broadly. We strive to promote awareness and an ever deeper understanding of the language, images, and policies that impact and define us as a people. We celebrate the diversity of Latinas/os and our own intersecting identities, while remaining critical of the construction of race, class, ethnicity, language, sexuality, gender, orientation, and self-image within our own identities and the communities to which we belong.

Mission: UUreka! seeks to create a space for students to explore an open spirituality based in the principles of Unitarian Universalism, through the weekly practice of self-reflection and community building exercises.

SLC Vanguard
Mission: Since 2008 Vanguard has been a forum for the collection, curation and publication of conference work by the Sarah Lawrence community. We believe that it is the independent interdisciplinary endeavors of students at Sarah Lawrence which distinguishes this prestigious college from other academic institutions. As it’s VANGUARD, our mission is as follows: to push these endeavours farther still. Through creative processes of collaboration, debate,discourse and discord,we aim to explore and exceed the bounds of all that is, and all that has been called, conference work.

Visual Art Review
Mission: The SLC Visual Art Review is a student-run annual publication showcasing the creative work and community of Sarah Lawrence. We welcome multiple submissions from any student, regardless of enrollment in a visual arts class. We also welcome new media art, video art, or other work that might not translate to print. Work is submitted under a blind submissions policy and accepted after viewing and discussion with a select group of students.

SLC VOX: Voices for Planned Parenthood
Mission: The SLC VOX (Voices for Planned Parenthood) Chapter is a Planned Parenthood affiliate that aims to educate and mobilize students and youth in support of reproductive health. The SLC VOX group works with the Hudson Peconic Planned Parenthood to educate the SLC community about sexual health and reproductive rights. VOX members lobby for local legislators and coordinate events that provide sexual health education and address governmental policies that affect access to sexual healthcare. The VOX chapter at SLC provides an abundance of volunteer and advocacy opportunities for those interested--ranging from canvassing, to voter registration, to community outreach, to petitioning. Members will receive volunteer hours for meetings as well as other VOX events they attend. VOX at SLC is an excellent way to keep yourself informed; get involved in a community interested in healthcare and sexual education; and affect change throughout campus, the local community, and nation-wide.

Women of Color Affinity Group (WoCo)
Mission: WoCo is an organization for women of color and their allies. We seek to celebrate and challenge preconceived notions of one’s identity as well as to collectively raise awareness of one’s own privilege. Our mission is to encourage long lasting relationships between the members of our group and our Sarah Lawrence community, while also providing a safe space for members. Everyone is welcome!

Worker’s Appreciation Dinner Club
Mission: The Worker’s Appreciation Dinner is an annual even coordinated by students to celebrate the hard work and importance of the many workers on this campus. In the past years we have given out invitations to the following departments: AVI, Maintenance, Security, ABM, Bookstore, Post Office and Duplication. Each department is vital is making sure this campus functions properly. We cater the event to the workers and their families and friends, making sure that they have as enjoyable a time as possible. Previously, this event was sponsored by UNIDAD, Harambee, and other Common Ground organizations. However, this year we are truly trying to outreach to the greater SLC community, while still maintaining ties to Common Ground to encourage a greater participation in planning and Putting on This event. Ultimately we want to demonstrate our immense gratitude to the workers and their families by strengthening the bond between students and workers.

SLC Workers Justice

Mission: Sarah Lawrence Worker Justice is a student based organization which strives to protect the rights and dignity of working people on campus. We recognize the impact of every working person’s labor at Sarah Lawrence College. As such an important part of our school community, SLCWJ believes that all workers are entitled to a safe and respectable environment to work in. Open to all students who wish to contribute, the group works to achieve these goals by engaging the school community, creating solidarity through dialogue, maintaining and defending the commons, and non violent direct action.

SLC Writers Block
Mission: Writer's Block aims to build a stronger writing community on campus by providing peer-to-peer help with academic writing and open writing hours for those who need some time and space to work on their writing outside of class. In peer-to-peer tutoring, students can bring in their academic writing (conference projects, plays, poems, PowerPoints, etc) and receive feedback. Our peer consultants will be students who understand how to discuss and collaborate with their fellow writers and create a comfortable environment to discuss the writer’s work. Peer consultants understand the SLC workload, the writing atmosphere on campus, and of course the special burden of a conference paper. If you've ever had writer's block, needed someone to bounce ideas off of, or just needed someone to look over your paper and tell you it makes sense, this would be the thing for you! Writer's Block also aims to create a more tangible writing community by hosting open writing hours. These will be part group writing games and prompts to get ideas going, and part quiet writing time for those who just need a place to sit and work. Our open writing sessions will be held during evenings, at times that are convenient for undergrads, and are welcome to writers of any genre.


Forty-five years after the Westlands Sit-in

Photo by Ellie Brumbaum '17

Photo by Ellie Brumbaum '17

On Tuesday, March 4, 1969, Westland's was overtaken by students. This was known as the "Westland's Sit-In." The students were complaining about "elitism" and wanted more "diversity."

Placards placed around campus said things such as, "Liberated womanhood in a sexually and socioeconomically homogenous environment is a logical inconsistency. Support the sit-in." 

Around seventy students of the 665 undergraduates and the ten graduates at the time participated in the sit-in. The front door was secured with a rope. Arthur Raybin, Director of Development for the college at the time, approached the students to reason with them soon after the takeover, but was told to leave.

Because the administrative offices were in Westlands, administration had to be moved into the President's House. They repurposed the rooms and carried on with business as best they could.

Classes continued as usual since the majority of students hadn't joined the sit-in. Some of the students sent food to the protestors inside Westland's.

The main spark for the sit-in was the tuition increase. The deficit was $700,000. According to CPI Inflation Calculator, that would be about $4,500,000 in today's dollars.  The tuition in 1969 was $5,000 per student, per year, which is about $32,000 today. The raise of $450 was announced in late January.  Esther Rausenbush, the President at the time, met with the 24-member Board of Trustees who agreed to lower the increase by $100 when alumni agreed to help meet the deficit. They also announced financial help for students facing hardships with the new costs.

The students rejected the compromise and began the sit-in demanding that the school be integrated with students from poor and middle-income families "in order to broaden the educational horizons of the student body." Their concern was that it would become impossible for anyone who was not rich to attend Sarah Lawrence.

What the students meant by "diversity" was that they wanted more lower income students. The twenty eight black students at the time were not in support of the sit-in. The Black Students Association did support several demands from the protesters, which were related to diversification and new educational goals and policies.

During their time in Westland's, the protesting students kept everything in order. They vacuumed the hall carpets on a daily basis, and even though they now had access to all the important papers of the college, as far as administration knows, the students touched none of them. 

At one point, a rumor surfaced that Esther Rausenbush was about to call the police. Three faculty members spoke to Esther, who promptly denied the rumor. By Friday, March 14th, Esther thought the tension had lessened enough for her to enter the building. Esther sent a note in the morning saying that she would come to the building at 10:30 a.m. and that she wanted the building clear, and the doors open. When Esther arrived, she was not admitted inside. A note placed outside listed three "demands." Esther's intention then was to send a warning note of suspension. Later, four girls said that they had abandoned the tuition request, and all the other requests except that "one-third of the entering class this fall should be people from working-class homes." Esther told them while a student body of many racial and economic backgrounds was desirable, they didn't have the money for it.

Later that day, word reached around campus that at around 10:30 p.m., the protesters were going to leave Westlands. At around 10:45, the protestors left the building. About a hundred people had gathered, including press representatives, some from CBS News. One protestor read a statement and then the rest of the protestors went off across campus, officially ending the sit-in. By 11:15 p.m., administration was back in their offices.

The sit-in ended ten days after it started. Some said the Westland's sit-in empowered the student body to take charge of their education, while others complained it would lead to a lowering of academic standards. 

When the rumor came out that Esther was going to suspend everyone in Westlands she was told, "Please don't do anything just now; they don't want to be suspended; they want to be here." The reasons for the sit-in had little to do with dissatisfaction of the college as a whole. Sarah Lawrence students already had a large voice in their education, strong communication with their teachers, and the opportunity to do independent work. Even the Board meeting that involved the tuition increase had two student representatives. The Westland's occupiers weren't protesting because they rejected the school, but because they valued it.

by Joseph McFarland '16

SLC Phoenix

The Phoenix is a non-profit, student-run publication representing the voices and opinions of Sarah Lawrence College community members. Our print edition publishes bi-weekly on Tuesdays, and our online edition is updated multiple times per week. Anyone may attend our open meetings at 9:00 PM on Wednesday nights in the North Room of the Pub.

Bookstore rethinks policies under fire from frustrated students

Photo by Ellie Brumbaum '17

Photo by Ellie Brumbaum '17

The Sarah Lawrence bookstore gets a lot of flack from the students and sometimes it’s actually warranted. When they have books in stock, they overcharge for them, and when they’re back ordered, the books aren’t expected to come in for multiple weeks. This creates a problem, as students then have to start classes without the books they need for completing their assignments.

However it’s not entirely the bookstore’s fault.  There is a decent sized problem surrounding the student body’s consumption of literature. There are students who despite not being in a class, or who get bumped from a class, decide to pursue their interest in the subject by buying the books in the bookstore anyways, leaving none or not enough books for those in the class .  Now, the students in the class have to belatedly order from Amazon or elsewhere, and wait until they arrive.  In the meantime, they now have to find alternative methods to get their hands on the readings. 

In addition to the problem of books bought by students not enrolled in a class, is the fact that the bookstore charges prices often too expensive for students.  While Rent-A-Book seeks to remedy this it isn’t effective: a single margin note in a rented book decreases the number of books available to rent out.  The bookstore also takes longer than online sellers to receive books, why is this? 

SLC Bookstore Store Manager Jorge Arteaga explains that part of the problem the bookstore faces in getting books for students is that they start by ordering a certain number of used copies and, once the school year begins, they order new editions of the books.  But, sometimes, the books that are harder to find, or even out of print, take longer to come in, which creates a back up. 

“The difference between Amazon and us is that Amazon has smaller book holders or smaller companies that hold on to books longer. We have to go directly to the distributors and publishers”, said Arteaga.  

Arteaga continues to explain that, occasionally, the distributors that the SLC bookstore goes through get backed up, as we are not the only school ordering books this time of year.  Arteaga stresses the importance of the “Save the Sale Initiative”; a step the bookstore took to try to help students get books faster by putting a slip of paper on the bookshelves, which allows students to order out-of-stock books on the spot, so when the books arrive, they have a reserved copy.  

“We really want to help the students as much as possible and get them to shop in the store,” Arteaga said.  

The issue seems to be a perfect storm of bookstore/eager-to-learn students/book warehouses.  Arteaga agrees that students purchasing books for classes they are not in is a large part of the problem.  Luckily, Arteaga shared some ideas that the bookstore is mulling over to solve this problem.  One such thought is a clerking system, in which students show a book clerk a list of courses they are in and the clerk goes to the back room and retrieves the books.  Then, after the beginning of the semester, students would be free to purchase whichever books they want, despite their course load.  Another idea is to have students’ courses connected to their OneCards so when the bookstore swipes a student’s OneCard, they can see which classes the student is in, and ensure that students are only purchasing books that correspond with their courses.  Again, this wouldn’t be for the entire semester – just until all students have what they need for their classes.  

Arteaga disclosed, that the overall number of students using the bookstore has declined greatly this past school year.  Many students are relying on Amazon for their books, as the prices are notably lower and it makes for a less stressful experience.  

 “I rely on Amazon unless I need a book for the very next day.  I also would use the bookstore more if it was open more and was better stocked” said Valerie Veldez, ’17. 

Even though these issues are not necessarily the bookstore’s fault, other more efficient services are emerging and the bookstore needs to compete with these, or throw in the towel and stick to sweatshirts, snacks, and assorted school-spirit items.  

by Sarah Simon '16

SLC Phoenix

The Phoenix is a non-profit, student-run publication representing the voices and opinions of Sarah Lawrence College community members. Our print edition publishes bi-weekly on Tuesdays, and our online edition is updated multiple times per week. Anyone may attend our open meetings at 9:00 PM on Wednesday nights in the North Room of the Pub.