March is Women’s History Month and for more than 20 years, ACC Social and Behavioral Sciences Coordinator and Professor of Sociology and Psychology Professor Dr. Jean Egan has made sure that the month does not go unnoticed. Each March Egan displays powerful messages on a Diversity Board located near ACC’s radio station. This month she selected items for the board that can make an impact on men and/or women. The messages showcase how media and social messages make an impact on how women view their bodies and perceive their self-image. Egan says she is hoping that the messages she has posted on this board will help women get beyond the stereotypes and social messages and allow them to be comfortable with who they are and the body they have.
ACC President James P. Lombella agrees that messages on some images being sent through social media can be harmful to many people. He applauds Egan’s effort and says that if one person’s life is impacted by stopping and looking at the board, it is a success.
The ACC Faculty member says that utilizing the board to encourage self-acceptance is a grass roots way to affect change. She said girls and women are being bombarded with unrealistic images of what they should look like. She said the photo-shopped images seen in print ads, on magazine covers and on television, along with clothing sizes that go as low as double zero, prevent many women and girls from feeling comfortable with their image.
She said she hopes the messages all genders will see when passing the board, will help change the way people think. She added, “Be who you are. Don’t be who someone else thinks you should be.”