Skip to Main Content

This is What Change Looks Like: Bay Path University, Springfield Museums, and community collaborators convene 2021 On the Move Forum to Advance Women

Share This Story

Longmeadow, MA —    In honor of Women’s History Month (March) and International Women’s Day (March 8), Bay Path University, Springfield Museums, and Unity First will present the fifth annual On the Move Forum to Advance Women on Monday, March 8, 2021, 10- 11:30 am (virtual). This year’s theme, "Women in Leadership: This is What Change Looks Like - Past, Present and Future” offers attendees an intergenerational, cross-cultural, gender-inclusive and history-infused conversation focused on women. Now in its fifth year, the event has engaged over 1,000 women in community conversations and presentations on women's history, empowerment and advancement.

This year's event aligns with the priority theme of the 65th session of the United Nations’ Commission on the Status of Women, “Women in Leadership: Achieving an equal future in a COVID-19 world.” According to Catalyst, in 2020 women of color represented only 18% of entry-level positions and few advanced to leadership positions. While White women held almost one-third (32.8%) of total management positions in the US in 2020, women of color held a much smaller share: Asian women (2.2%), Black women ( 4.1%) and Hispanic women ( 4.5%).

Janine Fondon, Chair of Undergraduate Communications and Assistant Professor at Bay Path University as well as founder of the On the Move Forum, noted, “This event is an opportunity for intergenerational, cross-cultural and gender-inclusive conversation where women of all backgrounds and levels can share their voices, insights and leadership.”

The On the Move Forum 2021 will feature an opening perspective by Dr. Ariana Curtis, Director of Content: Our Shared Future: Reckoning with Our Racial Past at the Smithsonian Institution. The keynote presentation will be given by On the Move’s inaugural scholar, Dr. Laura Lovett, Associate Professor at the University of Pittsburgh, Department of History and author of With Her Fist Raised: Dorothy Pitman Hughes and the Transformative Power of Black Activism.  Her book is the first biography about Dorothy Pitman Hughes, a trailblazing Black feminist activist whose work made children, race and welfare rights central to the 1970s Women’s Movement.  Dr. Lovett is currently co-editing a collection of essays on African American women leaders who helped frame the US answer to the call by the United Nations to identify nationwide agenda’s for International Women’s Year-- It’s Our Movement Now: Black Women’s Politics and the 1977 National Women’s Conference—co-edited by Kelly Giles, Sociology, UMASS and Dr. Rachel J. Daniel, Massasoit Community College, featuring a chapter by On the Move founder Janine Fondon.

The event will cover the:


Past -- Voices of Resilience exhibit of 70+ diverse women on the move will be highlighted by Springfield Museums, and new voices will be added to the exhibit.

Present -- A community conversation about the obstacles and opportunities impacting the advancement of women and the state of women of color.

Future -- Young women who are creating new pathways for change and success will be featured by Dr. Demetria Shabazz and Bay Path Students.

“As a college dedicated to the advancement of women, On the Move is a signature event that brings the community together to discover and learn about the women who have and are paving the way for all women," said Sandra Doran, President of Bay Path University. "In addition, the event creates an opportunity to have safe, meaningful conversations about change, allowing all voices to be heard and all individuals to feel they belong."

“The Museums, historically known as the People’s College, are proud to be a part of the conversation orchestrated by the On the Move Forum,” said Kay Simpson, President and CEO of the Springfield Museums. “As a gathering place for curious people, the Museums strongly support collaborative efforts to help us all engage through authentic educational and social experiences that foster connection.”

This event is free and open to the public and is hosted in collaboration with a range of organizations including: Springfield Museums, Women Innovators and Trailblazers, The Women’s Fund of Western Massachusetts, Girls Inc. of the Valley, Arise for Social Justice, the African American Female Professors Association, NAMIC New England, Creative Futures, LLC. and others.


Registration is required. To register, go to:

For more information, contact Janine Fondon at (413) 221-7931 or

# # #

About Bay Path University

Bay Path University was founded in 1897. With locations in Longmeadow (main), East Longmeadow (Philip H. Ryan Health Science Center), Sturbridge (MA), and Concord (MA), Bay Path’s innovative program offerings include traditional undergraduate degrees for women, The American Women's College, the first all-women, all-online accredited bachelor’s degree programs in the country; over 60 graduate programs for women and men, including doctorate degrees; and Strategic Partnerships, offering professional development courses for individuals and organizations.  Bay Path’s goal is to give students confidence in the fundamentals of their chosen field, the curiosity to question the ordinary, the leadership to show initiative, and the desire to make a difference.