The Washington University Woman’s Club has had a tradition of education, service and friendship for over 100 years. We pride ourselves in providing stimulating programs and activities for our members as well as service to the university community. We strive to make a difference to our members, to the university, to the students, to friends and to other organizations through our many programs.
Four years ago we awarded our first Endowed Scholarship to a deserving student attending University College. This year, we are delighted to again be awarding two Endowed Scholarships to deserving University College students.
We will start the year on September 8, 2016 with a Butterfly Celebration in appreciation of the Club members who volunteer to lovingly tend the Elizabeth Danforth Butterfly Garden on Forsyth Avenue. The garden is beautiful and relaxing, and full of butterflies. Woman’s Club members plant and maintain the garden throughout the year as a service to the University community. It is our crown jewel created to honor the wife of retiring Chancellor William H. Danforth.
We follow this with our annual welcome lunch hosted by Risa Zwerling Wrighton at Harbison House on September 9, 2016. Risa’s warmth and generosity provide a chance for continuing members to reunite and for newcomers to learn about our Club events, Interest Sections, and Service activities. The Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum also holds its opening that evening; Club members and guests are welcome at 6 PM.
Luncheons throughout the academic year will include topics of “Mentoring Female Students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math” in November, “The Passionate Life of Madame de Sevigne (1626-1696)” in January, and at our Annual Meeting in April, “A Garden for the World: Safeguarding the World’s Plants through the Missouri Botanical Garden.” Additionally, at the January luncheon, we recognize two students from University College who will receive Woman’s Club Centennial Scholarships. We will also hold two scholarship endowment games days this year, one in the Fall and one next Spring, to help build the endowment.
Theater Matinee at the Edison in April offers a casual gathering in the DUC Orchid Room, a preview lecture, and a Performing Arts Department production of Gossip.
The annual Assembly Series Lecture is made possible through a Club endowment begun in honor of our 75th Anniversary. This year it will be in November and will feature biographer Thomas Maier, author of “Masters of Sex: The Life and Times of William Masters and Virginia Johnson, The Couple Who Taught America How to Love;” and Michelle Ashford, creator and show runner of the hit Showtime television series of the same title, which is loosely based on Maier’s book.
Through “Meet the Leaders,” we co-host programs with the Gephardt Institute and the Provost’s Office. On Veteran’s Day in November we will hold our service project, “Holiday Cards for Heroes,” with the Red Cross.
“Women and the Kemper” provides exclusive study sessions with curators as well as special events. We have regular meetings of women who share common interests in our many interest groups and service activities. Additionally, we create and deepen lasting friendships as we do arts and crafts, learn about gardens and art, dance, join a book club, play bridge, canasta, or Mah Jong, learn how to write our life stories, and visit special museum sites and galleries in St. Louis
Our international women are those women whose husbands or partners are students or fellows of the university. They love to meet American women in an intercultural exchange of ideas. This group meets every week to enjoy each other and see St. Louis.
We do all this and more, so be sure to read our online newsletter or have it sent to your mailbox to keep up to date on all of our activities. Like us on Facebook to see photos of our members’ activities. We hope you will join us this year for friendship and exciting events.
Karen Johnson Fields