University faculty, staff celebrate Birzeit’s women in union ceremony

Birzeit University faculty, staff, and students celebrated the achievements of the university’s women in a ceremony marking the International Women’s Day, organized by the Union of Instructors and Employees. 

Dr. Beshara Doumani, president of Birzeit University, inaugurated the ceremony, lauding the achievements of Birzeit University’s women, whether faculty, staff, or students, who have always led and contributed towards positive change in the university’s community and the broader Palestinian society. 

In his address, Doumani highlighted the latest developments led by the university’s community towards achieving equality, diversity and inclusion, including the establishment of a gender equality observatory to promote social justice and equity, create a more inclusive and cohesive society inside the university’s campus, and eliminate discriminatory laws and practices.

Dr. Lena Meari, head of the Union of Instructors and Employees, emphasized the role of Palestinian women in the struggle against the Israeli occupation,  noting that, as equal partners in the struggle and in the development of the community, Palestinian women must have equal rights and opportunities in the society.

Dr. Rania Jawad, director of the university’s Institute of Women’s Studies,  presented a brief overview of the institute and its mission, saying that it seeks to promote the values of social justice and gender equality at Birzeit University and in the broader Palestinian community. She called upon all university faculty and staff to participate in the institute’s programs and activities and join the dialogue "for a fairer Palestinian society.”

During the ceremony, the union commemorated the efforts and achievements  of four women who worked and taught at Birzeit University for over 30 years: Dr. Grace Khoury, an assistant professor at the Faculty of Business and Economics; Suhaila Abu Ghdeib, head of the cataloging, classification, indexing and special collections section; Majida Danial, an executive assistant at the Faculty of Business and Economics; and  Faizeh Obaidah, executive assistant at the Faculty of Arts.

The union also celebrated Laurance Theodory, head of the Annual Fund Section, for her efforts to raise awareness on autism and her journey of turning difference into strength.