Barnard College News

Ashley Bush reflects on being a student coordinator for the first-ever Athena Film Festival in 2011 and the lasting impact the festival had on her award-winning filmmaking career.

We are delighted to announce that Umbreen Bhatti ’00 has joined Barnard as the Constance Hess Williams ’66 Director of the Athena Center for Leadership Studies. Umbreen brings a fresh perspective and considerable expertise to the Athena Center, with a focus on helping our students develop the skills they need to address today’s opportunities and challenges in creative and original ways.

The 2019 Athena Film Festival opened on Thursday, February 28th with the New York Premiere of 'Fast Color', a film about a superhero who is forced to run when her superhuman abilities are discovered. The festival continued throughout the weekend to showcase even more fierce and fearless women leaders featured in inspirational films like 'On the Basis of Sex', 'On Her Shoulders', and 'Ask For Jane'. In addition to films, the festival had some great receptions, workshops, panels, and an activism booth. The festival concluded with a bang when U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) attended as a panelist to support the New York premiere of 'Knock Down the House' on Sunday, March 3rd.

Kathryn Kolbert argued the case of Planned Parenthood v. Casey before the Supreme Court as a public interest attorney specializing in women’s reproductive rights. Melissa Silverstein founded Women and Hollywood, an initiative that “educates, advocates, and agitates for gender diversity and inclusion in Hollywood and the global film industry,” according to its website. At Barnard, they worked together to create an innovative event that promotes a new kind of leadership, uniting politics and film.

Former Athena Scholar Zoë LePage ’13  is highlighted in Barnard Magazine, talking about her nonprofit, which started out as her senior social action project. It's called Exhale to Inhale (ETI), which uses the healing practice of trauma-informed yoga to empower survivors.