In the spring of 1987, a number of women met to plan for a new organization for professional women at the university with goals of networking, discussion of issues, and professional programs. The group, led by Joan West, included Mary DuPree, Connie McQuillen, Kathy Aiken and Kathie George. By the fall, the group had had its first regular meeting and ratified bylaws in November. Finding a name for this group was a difficult task, with the name Athena finally chosen. Dr. Joan West was elected as Athena's first president.
Today Athena continues the work of the original organization. Athena is a University of Idaho association of staff and faculty committed to promoting an inclusive and equitable climate for women.
Athena offers members:
- opportunities to expand professional network to share mutual workplace concerns and interests.
- workshops, conferences, and other professional development opportunities.
- an organizational structure and board to advocate for their workplace needs and concerns.
- scholarship opportunities to support the educational efforts of campus women who share our commitment to gender equity and who have financial need.