In 1991, the Arizona Board of Regents (ABOR) issued the report Reaching the Vision: Women in Arizona's Universities in the Year 2000. The goal of this report was not only to acknowledge and highlight major problems affecting women in the Arizona University system, but it also sought to provide recommendations towards improving the status of women in three major areas: equity, career development and climate. Accordingly, following the release of Reaching the Vision, the ASU President established the ASU Commission on the Status of Women (CSW). The purpose of this commission was both to monitor the advancement of ABOR's recommendations and to advise the President on the overall progress of the institution towards equity.
Each year, members of the Commission dedicate countless hours towards investigating issues of inequality and towards finding solutions to these problems. Due to their hard work and dedication, by 1998 the ASU-CSW was able to report to the Regents that 80% of ASU's goals and objectives were at or near completion.
In 2001, ASU marked the ten year anniversary of the Commission, and in 2002, CSW developed a new Strategic Planning Initiative designed to highlight the issues and needs affecting the status of women at ASU. Focusing on six priority areas including Climate and Culture, Accountability, Compensation and Resources, Voice and Visibility, Training and Development, and Safety, CSW has developed both an immediate action and a long term remedy plan to improve these six priority areas. To address these issues, the CSW is driven by the concept of "impact." Nearly of our projects and initiatives are designed to provide impactful resources and support towards the success of women and other underrepresented groups.
The original structure of the CSW involved having a large group composed of representatives from each employment category across all ASU campuses. In 2004 however, the CSW reorganized its structure to meet growing needs of ASU. Accordingly, as ASU has become “one university in many places,” the CSW is now one commission in many places.
Currently, the CSW is divided into four campus committees located at the Downtown, Tempe, West, and Polytechnic campuses. All four campus committees are governed by an Executive Committee and supported by the CSW Coordinator. The Executive Committee organizes the work of the CSW, sets over-arching goals under which the campus commissions develop projects, and runs the CSW Awards Program. Members of the Executive Committee include all four campus committee chairs, the President and Provost’s Ex-Officio to the Commission, and the CSW Coordinator. ( For a more detailed explanation of the CSW's new structure, see our Membership page.)
Despite its structural changes, the Commission on the Status of Women has been and continues to be dedicated to identifying, advocating for and increasing the awareness of needed change in order to enhance opportunities for women at the university.
Listed below is a small sample of the many projects and issues that the CSW has accomplished:
Women’s Connection: ASU On-Line Resource Center:
The CSW created and currently runs an on-line women’s center called Women’s Connection. The site is designed to help answer any questions a person might have about their experience at ASU and to help connect them to important resources.
Visit the site at http://wc.asu.edu
Professional Development Conference
The CSW organizes and coordinates all aspects of the ASU CSW/SC Professional Development Conference which provides a full day of development workshops for all faculty, staff, and students at ASU.
Staff Mentoring Program & Development Program
Launced in Summer 2013, the ASU Commission on the Status of Women Staff Mentoring & Development Program pairs experienced and excelling staff members with staff who are interested in developing their career and leadership skills. The program is structured to provide support, networking opportunities, and professional development training to help staff members develop their careers and to become strong contributors to the New American University. The series will run annually, with the next cohort beginning in January 2014.
The CSW provides a wide variety of workshop sessions designed to help one feel better at work and at home. Some of our workshop topics include career development, leadership development, stress management, healthy living, and financial planning. I
Inaugurated in Spring 2012, the CSW Success Series provides special leadership and career development events designed to educate and empower.
Safety Key Tags
For the past six years the CSW has fundraised for, designed, and distributed safety key tags across all ASU campuses. These safety key tags detail phone numbers for important safety resources on campus, including ASU Police and the Safety Escort Service. Since 2006, the CSW has distributed over 125,000 key tags.
Each year the CSW engages in community outreach projects to benefit those in need in our communities. Past projects have benefited homeless shelters, women’s shelters, food banks, valley foster children, non-profit organizations, literacy programs, local area schools, and ASU programs providing outreach to staff and students.
Annual Awards Program
Each year, the CSW recognizes individuals, groups and teams whose efforts have worked to benefit women and other represented groups at ASU and beyond.
CSW studies conducted include:
CSW recommendations adopted: