The Pine - August 2019

The Official Publication of AAUW MN

  • A Message from our President
  • Minnesota is an AAUW Funds Star
  • Thank you, AAUW Minnesota (from a NCCWSL participant)
  • AAUW of Minnesota is offering ten $1,000 scholarships!
  • Work Smart Update
  • Around the State - Faribault Branch Celebrates Birthdays
  • Womens Suffrage Celebration

A message from our president, Lisa West

Dear Members,

There are so many interesting things going on right now; I want to update you about things headed our way as AAUW MN members.

2020 State Convention

First, we still don’t have a willing host for a 2020 State Convention. At this point, planning for the next Convention is typically well underway. The State Board met on July 27th, and at this stage, we’re talking about a scaled-back training/convention-type event in April – it could be in-person, it could be virtual, or both. So, stay tuned for more information.

Regional Convention Possibility

On the regional front, I’ve been in communication with AAUW leaders from several states, from Michigan to Texas, helping to organize a regional convention, currently being planned for June 18 and 19, 2020, in the Quad Cities area of Illinois and Iowa. VP Program, Deanna Ensley, is working with other states to prepare a preliminary budget for this event. Others are tackling speakers, marketing, and local events/excursions. Kim Churches committed to speaking at this regional convention. A lot of planning is occurring, and more information will be provided in future months. Mark your calendars – at least in pencil!!

100-year anniversary of Minnesota's Ratification of the 19th Amendment

And, mark your calendars for Sunday, September 8th – the 100-year anniversary of Minnesota’s Ratification of the 19th Amendment! From 12:00 to 5:00 p.m., a multi-organization event is being held at the State Capitol in St. Paul. AAUW MN is a partner for this event and will be hosting a table at the Civic Engagement Fair that’s a part of the afternoon. There will be information about this day in this issue of The Pine and on our website, or for event details, please also visit: If you’re willing to “woman” (or man) our table for part of the afternoon, please let me know. This is an exciting, history-filled event that I encourage members and your families to attend and celebrate. And nationally, ratification of the 19th Amendment will also be celebrated in other ways in 2020.

Other quick notes...

AAUW-MN grants - Make sure to look at the grants being offered by AAUW MN to branches (some of which offer increased scholarship amounts this year). Take advantage of these grants as much as you can!

AAUW-MN directory - The directory is on track this year to be completed and available in September. We are NOT waiting for branches who refuse to get this information submitted on time. Old branch information or blank pages will result from not returning a simple, minimally time-consuming form by the requested date. We were way too accommodating last year, reminding and reminding some branches into early 2019, resulting in a fairly, uselessly, late distribution of the 2018-2019 directory. It was not the Board’s fault, and it’s not happening again. Informing the State Board, with your new Branch Board information, should be automatic after your branch elections!

We are here to help you - If your branch is struggling with anything, anything at all, please, please contact me or anyone on the Board for help. We’re here to help you in any way we can.

August Quote:

“It was we …the whole people, who formed the Union. And we formed it, not to give blessings of liberty, but to secure them; not to the half of ourselves and the half of our posterity, but to the whole people. ~ Susan B. Anthony

Minnesota is an AAUW Funds Star!

Barbara Wonson Liukkonen


Minnesota AAUW members have always been strong supporters of our AAUW educational grant funding.

Did you know...

  • that we have initiated and completed eight Research and Projects Grants,
  • twelve American Fellowships,
  • and two International Fellowships?

All of these fellowships and R&P grants are now stipend-producing, providing much-needed funds for women reaching for their dreams. You may recognize the names of some of these outstanding AAUW-Minnesota members who have been honored by having a fellowship or R&P fund named after them. (Please click the link below this article to see the listings)

American Fellowships support women scholars who are completing dissertations, planning research leave from accredited institutions, or preparing research for publication. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents. AAUW’s first fellowship was awarded in 1888.

International Fellowships are awarded for full-time study or research for either graduate or post-graduate studies in the United States to women who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. The International Fellowships program awarded its first fellowship in 1917. The program includes women from around the world, and International Fellowships have been awarded to more than 3,600 women from more than 150 nations.

Research & Project Grants provide funds for community action or campus action projects, research publication, or other research efforts.

If you are interested in how the stipend from a fellowship or R&P grant is being disbursed, you can find out on the website.

All the scholars are listed, together with which funds they have received, where and what they are studying, and some background information. You’ll see that an individual scholar often receives support from more than one fund and that our Minnesota-based fellowships are often used to support scholars from or those studying in Minnesota.

Thank you, AAUW of Minnesota!

Morning, sorry I took so long to write my feedback on my experience at the conference.

I am so thankful for the opportunity you gave me to attend the women’s conference. I met a lot of great women who all brought different, but great ideas to the table. I learned a lot from the conference and if I had the opportunity to go again, I would.

My goal is to apply for scholarships to get into the Leadership and Advocacy program at St. Thomas or Metro State University. I truly feel like the conference impacted me in many different ways. From the guests who spoke, I related more to Dr. Tererai Trent because we come from similar backgrounds. We both come from places where women are viewed as only housewives and can’t partake in decision making or where women can not go to school because their parents marry them off to men with no jobs. In most cases, girls lock their dreams away and never get the chance to fulfill them. I believe Dr. Trent awakened me more to work smart and achieve the dream of one day becoming a leader in my country; What a man can do, I can also do.

I learned that I need to be doing the things I love best So that I don’t get stuck doing something I don’t love. I also learned that I need to always try and not put myself out. I need to be curious and look for opportunities to grow, most importantly believe in myself that I can do anything.

Thank you,
Monica Nkonga

Michelle Cabarello from Hastings enjoying NCCWSL

AAUW of Minnesota is offering ten $1,000 scholarships!

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Gail Glashan

AAUW of Minnesota, NCCWSL Chair

AAUW of Minnesota is offering ten $1,000.00 scholarships! One scholarship per branch that sends a college woman to the National Conference of College Women Student Leaders, aka NCCWSL, pronounced ‘nick-whistle.’

AAUW of Minnesota received thank you notes from 2019 NCCWSL attendees:

“ …the conference was absolutely amazing and made me feel like I can conquer whatever the world throws at me…I attended five workshops that helped strengthen my skills, knowledge, and abilities. 1. Rock Your Profile 2. Navigating Difficult Conversations 3. Building Authentic and Powerful Relationships in a Diverse Society 4. Campaigns and Election Trails 5. Public Speaking for Women by a Woman Who Speaks… ~Sara Minder

“ …Thank you so very much for the scholarship to attend NCCWSL…the speech by Dr. Tererai Trent (Oprah’s “All-Time Favorite Guest”) inspired me…I was so happy to meet so many different people and I will certainly bring my memories back to Smith… ~Claudia Schmugge

I hope your branch will consider giving this opportunity to a deserving young college woman in your community by applying for a $1,000.00 grant, which covers the cost of NCCWSL registration, room and board and airfare. AAUW of Minnesota Board has voted to approve awarding $1,000.00 to ten Minnesota branches, one grant per branch, that send a student to the 2020 National Conference for College Women Student Leaders aka NCCWSL.

The deadline to submit a chosen applicant, along with proof of registration, to AAUW of Minnesota is February 1, 2020. Checks will be awarded to each branch in February 2020.

As America’s premier conference for college women, NCCWSL provides a transformative experience for 800+ attendees and prepares them to be the next generation of leaders.

See the links below for the NCCWSL documents.

Materials will be on the AAUW of Minnesota website later in September 2019.

Timeline on how branches can apply for the NCCWSL grants

How AAUW Branches can apply for the grant

Samples of NCCWSL Flyer & Application from the Hastings Branch

Dear AAUW Leader,

This email is coming to you with the urgent request from the national board that you forward it to your branch members. AAUW has made pay equity a major focus of our programming and Work Smart is a major part of that focus. It isn’t just for members. It will help all women. The summer break from other AAUW activities is a good time for members to take the online Work Smart program.

In order to satisfy the terms of the Coca Cola Foundation grant, we still need more people to register for the free online Work Smartprogram. While a very good number of people have taken the online version, to date, very few AAUW members have done so. Everyone can receive something of value to them from the program. This includes women in the workforce, retirees, men with wives, daughters, mothers and friends in the workforce. (Although the program is focused on women, men are welcome to participate.)

AAUW members who take Work Smart online find that it is easy to access, informative, teaches how to recognize their own self-worth and can even be helpful in getting the best deals on cars and other purchases. Sharing the valuable information with family and friends is very satisfying. Give Work Smart a try! You won’t be sorry.

Please share this link, with non-AAUW members, too. Perhaps you can make a goal of reaching out to 10 others. The pay equity we seek isn’t just for us.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me. Thank you for helping to get this message out and for all you do for AAUW!

Warm regards,

Karen Kirkwood, Director on the AAUW Board

Around the state...

Faribault Branch members connect to celebrate birthdays!

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Several years ago, Faribault Branch members decided to meet quarterly to celebrate birthdays at local restaraunts. They chose to meet on the first Wednesday of the second month of the quarter to gather for dinner to celebrate each members birthday.

  • First Wednesday in February to celebrate January, February, and March birthdays
  • First Wednesday in May to celebrate April, May, and June birthdays
  • First Wednesday in Auguest to celebrate July, August, and September birthdays
  • First Wednesday in November to celebrate October, November, and December

However, it does not need to be your birthday month to celebrate! Every one is welcome all of the time. This picture was taken earlier this month at The Depot!

What fun idea does your Branch do to get together with your AAUW Sisters? Let Cyndy know by emailing

Help promote Minnesota Women's Suffrage Day on September 8!

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AAUW-MN will have a table at this event! Watch for more details coming soon via email and Facebook posts!

From the League of Women Voters, Michelle Witte to Lisa West

You are receiving this email as someone who is currently involved in helping plan the September 8 event, or who has expressed an interest in being informed about upcoming Woman Suffrage Centennial events. We are so pleased to finally begin our mass promotion of this special day on September 8 to celebrate the true 100th Anniversary of when Minnesota became the 15th state to sign onto the 19th Amendment. Minnesota Secretary of State Steve Simon will be helping to lead our Rotunda Ceremony, and we have many wonderful partners working to create a special day filled with activities that honor this important anniversary and the women who made it possible. Our day will also include a reflection on the challenges that continued to face women and all people of color even after passage of the 19th Amendment, and how we need to continue to work together to fulfill the promise of an inclusive democracy.

Here's how you can help be a part of and help promote this event:

  • Log onto our website and download the poster and social media graphics and information to add to your constituency communications - via your newsletters, websites, social media pages, emails, etc. We will continue to update our website as activities and speakers are confirmed.
  • Log onto our Event Facebook Page and use this page to invite your members, colleagues, friends and family.
  • Please help invite women elected officials - present and past - to be part of our Group Photo on the State Capitol Steps! This will be a great commemorative takeaway from this special day. Here is a link for people to RSVP so we can get a sense of who might attend and then get the photo sent out to them afterwards. We're hoping women from across the entire State can join us! (Please note that NO campaigning is allowed at this event. We're delighted to welcome all officials, but campaign literature or booths are now allowed.)