"We Are HeForShe": Stony Brook University Commits to Take Action for Gender Equality

June 18, 2015

Stony Brook, NY (June 18, 2015) – Following IMPACT 10x10x10’s launch earlier this year, Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD today announced that he has joined UN Women’s HeForShe solidarity movement as an IMPACT 10x10x10 champion, making Stony Brook University one of 10 universities around the world committing to take bold game-changing action to achieve gender equality within and beyond their institutions. This work will be done in partnership with UN Women, the United Nations entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. On Sept. 20, 2014, UN Women introduced HeForShe, which aims to mobilize one billion men and boys in support of gender equality.

Launched at a press conference at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, in January of 2015, HeForShe’s IMPACT 10x10x10 program engages 30 key leaders across three sectors—the public sector, private sector and academia. All 30 IMPACT champions have made common commitments and have also developed tailored commitments, formally reviewed by an expert team at UN Women and approved personally by the Executive Director of UN Women, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

Working closely with the Chancellor of the State University of New York (SUNY) and the 63 SUNY campus presidents throughout New York, Stony Brook University will champion three core areas to drive progress on gender equality and will serve as a leader and advocate within the system on these important issues, inviting other colleges and universities to take up common commitments.

The three core areas of commitment are as follows:

  • Close the gap between men and women – from matriculation to graduation;
  • Use Stony Brook University’s Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities to build global understanding of the role for men in achieving gender equality;
  • Integrate gender equality into the academic and social experience of Stony Brook University.

Stony Brook University has also committed to develop and implement a gender sensitization curriculum for students, faculty and staff (including a mandatory orientation for all new students), along with programs that will address gender-based violence. It has agreed to meet frequently with other IMPACT champions, to transparently measure and report on progress, to share best practices and to engage other universities to take up this cause.

The Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities (CSMM) at Stony Brook University hosted in March in New York City the first-ever International Conference on Masculinities: Engaging Men and Boys for Gender Equality. The four-day symposium, led by CSMM Director and Stony Brook University Professor Michael Kimmel, encouraged men’s activism in support of gender justice and increased cooperation between feminist activists and academic researchers who address these issues. It was attended by 800 activists from around the world. Renowned participants in the Conference included Jane Fonda, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Sheryl Sandberg, and Gloria Steinem, among many others. HeForShe was a partner in the Conference.

IMPACT champions were selected based on their reputation for strong ethical practices, their demonstrated excellence in public service, their global reach and relevance, and their willingness to use their full footprint and influence to drive and inspire change across higher education. Current IMPACT university champions include Georgetown University, The University of Hong Kong, University of Leicester, Nagoya University, Oxford University, Sciences Po, University of Sao Paulo, University of Waterloo and University of the Witwatersrand.

Other IMPACT champions include the Heads of State of Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Finland, Japan, Malawi, Romania, Rwanda, and Sweden. Corporate IMPACT champions include Accor Hotels, Barclays, Koc Holding, McKinsey & Company, Pricewaterhouse Coopers (PwC), Schneider Electric, Tupperware Brands, Unilever, and Vodafone.

The gender equality issues we face on a daily basis could not be more important or timely,” said Stony Brook University President Samuel L. Stanley Jr., MD. “Among them: the role of men in gender equality; how can men become involved in the prevention of violence against women; how do we combat sexual assault and gender-based violence; and how do we promote healthy behaviors?

“In our role as a HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 University Champion, it is the willingness to address these questions and improve in the process that will effect change. The answers are fundamental to how we treat one another, how we work together to improve the human condition, and how we endeavor to achieve true equality.”

“SUNY is proud to be a part of the HeForShe campaign and to take on the important challenge of incorporating gender equality into various curricula, programs, and initiatives on our college and university campuses across New York State,” said SUNY Chancellor Nancy L. Zimpher. “I am confident that today’s commitment to action is the first among many that will come from our SUNY campuses, and I am grateful to President Stanley for taking the lead on SUNY’s participation given the significant expertise of Stony Brook faculty and staff, particularly those at the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities.”  


About Stony Brook University
Stony Brook University is a doctoral granting research institution and a member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. Located on the north shore of Long Island in New York, Stony Brook has a student population of 24,600, and is one of four University Centers in the State University of New York (SUNY) system. Through its Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities, Stony Brook has established an international reputation for advancing what is also the HeForShe mission: engaging men to support women's equality. Additional information is available at http://www.stonybrook.edu.

About UN Women
UN Women is the UN entity dedicated to gender equality and the empowerment of women. A global champion for women and girls, UN Women was established to accelerate progress on meeting their needs worldwide. For more information, visit www.unwomen.org.  UN Women, 220 East 42nd Street, New York, NY 10017, Tel: 646-781-4400, Fax: 646-781-4496.

About HeForShe
HeForShe is a global solidarity movement that calls upon men and boys to take action and advocate for gender equality. The campaign strengthens the support for women’s rights as human rights, by enlisting men as advocates for gender equality. For more information, visit http://www.heforshe.org

About the State University of New York
The State University of New York is the largest comprehensive system of higher education in the United States, with 64 college and university campuses located within 30 miles of every home, school and business in the state. In 2015–16, SUNY served nearly 1.3 million students, including nearly 600,000 in credit-bearing courses and programs and more than 700,000 through continuing education and community outreach programs. SUNY students and faculty across the state make significant contributions to research and discovery, resulting in nearly $1 billion of externally sponsored activity each year. There are 3 million SUNY alumni worldwide, and one in three New Yorkers with a college degree is a SUNY alum. To learn more about how SUNY creates opportunity, visit www.suny.edu.


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