“Girl Rising,” Peace Corps at HWS – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

“Girl Rising,” Peace Corps at HWS

A film screening of “Girl Rising” will take place in the Geneva Room of the Warren Hunting Smith Library on Wednesday, Oct. 15. The documentary uses storytelling to inspire action that gets girls into classrooms worldwide in an effort to break cycles of poverty worldwide. The film will be screened from 7 to 9 p.m., and is free and open to the public.

CNN Films’ “Girl Rising” highlights the issues of political, cultural, historical, social, and geographic that are linked to educating girls. Directed by Academy Award nominee Richard Robbins, the film features the voices of celebrities Anne Hathaway, Alicia Keys, Meryl Streep, Kerry Washington, and others, to tell the stories of nine girls from nine developing countries as they overcome impossible odds. “One girl with courage is a revolution,” notes CNN on the film’s website.

Professor of Media and Society Linda Robertson’s introductory course on documentary filmmaking,MDSC 315 Introduction to Social Documentary, is involved in the Girl Rising project in two ways. Teams of students have selected HWS departments, programs and clubs to target and created trailers specifically for them to advertise the event. They are sending the trailers as email attachments, along with emails urging people to participate.

Students are also making short documentaries about what organizations sponsored the event and why. They will also interview members of the audience after the event for their reactions.

“Girl Rising” is being presented by the Colleges in partnership with the Peace Corps, the Zonta Club of Geneva, Boys & Girls Club of Geneva, the Geneva League of Women Voters, Lake to Lake Women, Yates Branch AAUW, HWS Media and Society Department, the Girl Scouts of NYPENN Pathways, Inc., and the Geneva Public Library. Representatives from co-sponsoring organizations will be introduced briefly before the movie.

“In nations around the world, Peace Corps volunteers are working to empower the next generation of change makers by helping girls and young women build self-confidence, gain an education and develop critical life skills,” says Dove Russo, Peace Corps recruiter for Hobart and William Smith Colleges. “Volunteers teach girls to think beyond traditional gender roles and address the unique societal issues that young women face in their communities.”

Russo will be on campus the day of the screening and will be available to meet with students from 3 to 6 p.m. in Trinity 206. Students who are interested in meeting with her should e-mail serve@hws.edu.

Each year, members of the Peace Corps pursue vital service opportunities in countries all around the world, making a difference in the lives of countless individuals that’s both meaningful and long-lasting.

Established in 1961, the Peace Corps sends thousands of volunteers around the world each year to work in important fields such as business, technology and health to help improve the lives of those they serve. With a focus on education, sustainability and restoration, Peace Corps members serve in a specific area for two years with the goal of making a lasting impact on their respective communities.

HWS alums have been serving with the Peace Corps in a variety of capacities over the years and often return to campus to share their experiences with current students. In February, Shanelle France ’11 returned to campus to reflect on her service experience in Lesotho.