History, Government & Politics

Asian American Students in Action (AASiA)

Student Leaders: Audrey Koh
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Bilal Ansari
Meeting Time/Place: Zilkha Center, Thursdays at 7 PM

Based on our belief that the various interests of the Asian American organizations on campus are often interrelated, Asian American Students in Action, as the coalition between CASO, KOW, NASU, SASA, and VSO, is committeed to facilitation, interaction, and communication among these groups. AASiA is also an independent group, separate from the coalition groups, with its own goals and activities and works to foster Asian American awareness in the Williams community. AASiA is prepared to act as the representative of the coalition groups in large events jointly sponsored with other organizations on campus. Through social activities, intellectual discussions, and political activism, AASiA strives to provide a forum for community building and cross-cultural exchange.

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Berkshire Immigrant Center

The mission of the Berkshire Immigrant Center is to assist individuals and families in making the economic, psychological and cultural adjustment to a new land, not only by meeting basic needs, but also by helping them to become active participants in our community. The Center also aims to build bridges of understanding and cooperation across cultures, to fight racism and discrimination in all forms, and to advocate for the rights of immigrants from all backgrounds. The Center offers comprehensive services for individuals from more than 80 countries to promote civic engagement, facilitate cultural integration, and assist in navigating the complex U.S. immigration system.

Additional Information & Current Opportunities:

learning-in-action.williams.edu/opportunities/berkshire-immigrant-center/

Black Student Union

Student Leaders: Alia Richardson
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Bilal Ansari
Meeting Time/Place: Sundays 2PM, Rice House

Our primary objective is to proactively engage the Black community, provide a holistic support system for Black students at Williams, and adapt the structure of BSU to changing campus needs. We aim to make BSU an organization that directly funnels students’ concerns to campus administrators, and provides social, emotional, academic and professional support for Black students. We aspire to stimulate campus dialogue on experiences that are unique to Black people in the Purple Bubble and beyond, through hosting valuable discussions, and inviting speakers to campus.

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Bread and Roses

Student Leaders: Wylie Thornquist
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Shanti Singham
Meeting Time/Place: Wednesdays in Environmental Center

Bread and Roses is a student organization interested in bringing discussions of labor rights and organizing to campus, by engaging with existing labor movements in the Berkshire area and learning about labor history more broadly. We organize talks with local unions, and try to facilitate student participation and support for worker’s rights. Our group also holds discussions for students to learn about and discuss left politics, theory, and action more broadly.

Break Out Trips

In 2013-2014, the Chaplains’ Office and Center for Learning in Action began coordinating funding and advising for Break Out Trips over spring break that involve projects in and beyond the Berkshires region.  A general interest survey, detailed advice, guidelines, timetable, a Proposal Form, Budget Calculator, and additional resources are available at learning-in-action.williams.edu/opportunities/bot.

Campus Democrats

Student Leader: Argenis Herrera
Faculty/Staff Adviser: James Mahon
Meeting Time/Place: Wednesday 4PM, Hollander 317

The purpose of our organization is to give Williams students and members of the community a platform through which they can discuss and advance their political views. We hope to learn from one another in order to further our political knowledge and activism. We plan to help elect candidates, inform constituents about policies, and create a college campus that is more politically active. It is also the purpose of this organization to abide by the Code of Student Conduct and to uphold the educational mission of Williams College.

Circle of Women

Student Leaders: Ariana Romeo
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Magnus Bernhardsoon
Meeting Time/Place: Weekly on Sundays

Circle of Women (CoW) is a national nonprofit organization–run completely by students–that provides the necessary resources to girls around the world who are pursuing an education. As such, our focus is primarily abroad. The organization partners up with local groups to implement construction projects and each school/college chapter fundraises to make such projects possible. The Williams chapter is responsible for CoW’s most recent project, which is a girls’ higher secondary school in Jabergali, Pakistan.

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CLiA Community Outreach Summer Fellowship

This paid summer program trains a small team of Williams students to help build better community service and experiential learning opportunities at Williams.  The selected rising Sophomores and Juniors are initially oriented to the Berkshires and trained in key skill areas before spending the balance of their time immersed and leading others in community engagement work.  This 8-week, 35-hour/week position reports to the CLiA Director.

Additional Information & Application:

learning-in-action.williams.edu/opportunities/community-outreach-summer-fellowship

 

Coalition for Immigrant Student Advancement

Student Leaders: Vanessa Quevedo
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Ninah Pretto
Meeting Time/Place: Thursdays 7PM, Zilkha Center

CISA aims to achieve administrative progress and create a campus consciousness around immigrant issues. We hope to improve college policies to better address the needs of immigrant and mixed-status family students. We also want to foster a richer campus dialogue and give a voice to these stories.

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Darfur Cookie Project

Student Leaders: Isabel Abraham ([email protected]), Todd Hall ([email protected])
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Tendai Muparutsa ([email protected])
Meeting Time/Place: Once per month, Paresky

This project is an attempt to bake and sell 400,000 cookies. We bake and sell cookies to raise money for the Jewish World Watch Solar Cooker Project. The Solar Cooker Project provides solar powered stoves for refugees from the Darfur region of Sudan, who are in camps in Chad. We also hope that our project will help people understand the enormity of genocide.

Divest Williams

Student Leaders: Isabelle Furman ([email protected])
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Shanti Singham
Meeting Time/Place: Wednesdays 9 PM in Zilkha Center

Divest Williams seeks to build and foster a movement around divestment of the college’s endowment from fossil fuels; in this work, we aim also to undermine the entire extractive economy. Through this work, we strive to educate the community and challenge people to think more deeply about both their own and Williams’s place in social movements. We hope to develop a deeper understanding of systems of power and oppression and the points at which these systems are vulnerable. We understand the fight for climate justice to be inextricably linked to the fight for racial justice, economic justice, LGBTQIA justice; to the fight to end colonialism and imperialism and dismantle the patriarchy; to end ableism, transphobia, heterosexism, and all other forms of oppression. Therefore Divest Williams stands with all other groups fighting for social justice and climate justice on campus and beyond.

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Education Outreach

For 20+ years, Williams has partnered with our local educators to create hands-on programming that serve the needs of the children and their families in a host of Berkshire County schools in the areas of science, writing, mentoring, homework help and more. Currently, more than 350 students participate and serve in K-12 schools in paid and volunteer positions in Williamstown, Lanesborough, North Adams and Pittsfield. We welcome your involvement and ideas, and look forward to hearing from you! Please visit the Education Outreach section of our website for more information.

Hoosic River Revival Summer Internship

The Hoosic River Revival (HRR) is looking for students to conduct research and assist with public programs, and help produce a short film.  The HRR is a community-based, nonprofit organization with a mission to reconnect the North Adams community to a clean, beautiful, and safe Hoosic River and to enhance the river’s recreational, cultural and economic vitality. For complete details, visit learning-in-action.williams.edu/opportunities/hoosic-river-revival-summer-internship/.

Kinetic

Student Leaders: Zachary Brand
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Jessica Bernheim

The purpose of Kinetic is to cultivate a social innovation incubator committed to designing and implementing creative, non-political, sustainable, scalable solutions to pressing social issues in the Berkshire region. Kinetic teams, which are comprised of 4-8 Kinetic members, work on a particular issue in three distinct phases: research, design, and implementation. Kinetic members work to understand the entire landscape of an issue and to discover gaps where they can intervene and create systemic change.

Kinetic Website

No Lost Generation

Student Leaders: Emma Lezberg
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Colin Ovitsky
Meeting Time/Place: Weekly

No Lost Generation – Williams College (NLG) is the campus chapter of a national group supporting and advocating for refugees and immigrants. Our current focus is working with schools and local organizations to educate our campus and community about the global refugee crisis and migration.

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Rules Change Project

The Rules Change Project is an initiative to support action ideas for capitalism and the common good.  America is not working for all of us. The Rules Change Project is an open coalition to spotlight, amplify and educate the public about existing efforts to foster economic “rules change.” It is an informal, non-partisan collaboration of individuals and independent groups seeking to help launch a national conversation about how we govern, regulate, manage and interact with corporations, about their relationship with government, and with their stakeholders — employees, customers, communities, the environment — in addition to stockholders.

Additional Information & Current Opportunities:

learning-in-action.williams.edu/opportunities/rules-change-project

Sisterhood

Student Leaders: Shadae McClean
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Shawna Patterson-Stephens
Meeting Time/Place: Thursdays at 5 PM, Zilkha Center

The main purpose of Sisterhood is to empower its members, instill a sense of unity, navigate the world as a double minority and help support those who identify as a black female in the outside community. We do this through holding weekly meetings and various activities (such as formals, parties, recreation days) to provide black students with a platform to address issues that are important to them that may be overlooked or undetected.

Students for Education Reform

Student Leader: Cooper Bramble
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Shawna Patterson-Stephens
Meeting Time/Place: Wednesday at 6 PM, Paresky 220

Student’s for Education Reform is an organization that is committed to improving the state of education in the United States. We advocate at the state, local, and national levels, pushing for positive legislative change and raising awareness for important educational issues. At the college, we work to increase understanding and foster discussion about education related issues by holding events, bringing in speakers, conducting school/school board visits and holding dinner meetings.

Students for Israeli-Palestinian Dialogue

Student Leaders: Hannah Goldstein
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Seth Wax
Meeting Time/Place: Potentiall Griffin 3

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict/occupation is full of nuance. We value discourse and feel that there is a gap in campus conversations. Our goal is to create more open dialogue, education, and compassion within the community about this conflict. We hope to achieve this by inviting speakers to campus and creating workshops and trainings for students to engage thoughtfully and respectfully over such a charged topic.

Students for Justice in Palestine

Student Leaders: Eliza Klein
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Shanti Singham
Meeting Time/Place: Thursdays at 9 PM, Zilkha Center

Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is a club that organizes around the occupation of Palestine and advocates for Palestinian human rights. Through campus events, teach-ins, workshops, film screenings, art installations, guest speakers, op-eds, and beyond, SJP seeks to mobilize the campus around the occupation of Palestine. Our club stands in solidarity with Palestinians fighting for dignity, equality, and freedom everywhere, and works with other student organizations on campus committed to anti-racism and indigenous resistance to settler colonial violence.

The Alhambra Consulting Group

Student Leaders: Nikhil Palanki
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Paula Consolini
Meeting Time/Place: Mondays, Wednesdays in Paresky Center

The Alhambra Consulting Group (ACG) is Williams College’s first-ever student-run consulting group. As a firm, Alhambra aims to foster regional economic development in Berkshire County by providing pro-bono strategy and management advisory to local businesses, non-profits, and political (public sector) groups. Alhambra’s primary service includes conducting academic and business research, collecting and analyzing data, advising and designing marketing and advertising campaigns, and developing and implementing technology. Alhambra’s primary focus is to leverage the resources of Williams College to engage with the regional issues of Berkshire County and foster long-term growth and change for our clients and out community.

Williams Forum

Student Leaders: Christian Maloney
Faculty/Staff Adviser: Carrie Greene
Meeting Time/Place: Mondays

The Williams Forum is a nonpartisan organization that promotes academic discourse and debate. We bring in speakers to talk about important issues, either local or national, and organize on-campus debates that involve both students and the faculty. Our goal is to expose the Williams community to intellectual insights on both sides of the political spectrum and involve as many participants as possible.

Williamstown Historical Museum

The Williamstown House of Local History was founded in 1941 to promote knowledge of the town’s history by collecting and preserving materials, mounting exhibitions, presenting educational programs and facilitating research. Its goal is to document the diverse people and buildings, the associations and institutions, the businesses and events which form the town’s history from the earliest days to the present time. The collection includes photographs, documents and artifacts from the 1700s to the present day as well as published material on the town and genealogical material on local families.

If you’re interested in history, the Williamstown Historical Museum is the place for you!  We are a museum and research center that maintains a collection of photos, artifacts and documents that relate to Williamstown’s past. We work to increase the public’s knowledge of Williamstown’s past in a variety of ways including educational exhibits, programs, events, research and publications.  

We have numerous volunteer opportunities available.  Our goal is to help you to use your talents and interests in a way that allows our organization to maintain a diverse collection of photos, artifacts, documents and manuscripts, and use our materials to educate the public about the town.  As a volunteer you are a valued member of our team and you will develop a greater connection to the community around you as your understanding of our local history grows.   All of our volunteers will receive training and a manual to assist you with your work.  

To learn more about our organization please visit our museum, visit our website or give Sarah or Nancy at the WHM a call:

1095 Main Street
Williamstown, MA
413-458-2160
www.williamstownhistoricalmuseum.org
Contact: Sarah Currie, Director, [email protected]