A monthly newsletter for students and friends of  Kicks Martial Arts for Women
Inside this issue:

The Future of Feminism

ITU Seminar a Hit!

Cool Link of the Month

Rank Promotions

Upcoming Events


Located at the Heiter Community Center • 100 North Fifth Street •  Lewisburg, PA 17837
May 2004

The Future of Feminism
Faces of the Future
A look at Bucknell Sirens and SASSE Syracuse
boards This issue of the Dojang Digest is dedicated to all young women fighting to advance the cause of feminism, which includes as a tenet the struggle to eradicate the systematic violence that women experience in their daily lives.

As a member of the Bucknell community I am always encouraged by the strength and leadership of Bucknell students who are organizing themselves around feminist principles. The members of Bucknell Sirens, for example, tirelessly work to educate students and staff about issues of sex inequality and misogyny. Sirens' activism encourages dialogue and protest and represents the courage and conviction of today's feminists. Sirens is currently the sponsor of kbav Bucknell Kick Back Against Violence 2004, which will be held on May 2nd.

I recently had the opportunity to give a twelve hour Empower! Self-Defense for Women workshop at Syracuse University. The event was sponsored by Students Advocating Sexual Safety and Empowerment (SASSE).  It was one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I left Syracuse empowered by the future of feminism!

This month's Dojang Digest is dedicated to this current generation of bold and brazen feminist fighters who are continuing the struggle to challenge sexism and inequality. quay

These young women, along with thousands of others across the country and internationally, are a force to be reckoned with! Their example leaves me optimistic about the future of feminism. Keep up the great work!

Quay practices ground fighting during Empower!

SASSE Syracuse

SASSE Women SASSE (Students Advancing Sexual Safety and Empowerment) was started as a subset of the only existing feminist organization at Syracuse University [SU] in 2000, the Committee on Women and Art (CWA). The Vagina Monologues was first performed at SU in 2001 and was so successful that it split with CWA to form V-Day Syracuse. After a second successful year in 2002, V-Day Syracuse decided that in order to expand to fill the needs it recognized in the SU community, it needed to move away from the international V-Day organization in name and goals, and so SASSE was formed. V-Day Syracuse still exists as a sub-committee within SASSE, but the goals and work of SASSE reach far beyond V-Day and V-Week.

As the largest feminist organization at SU, SASSE is committed to advancing the status of women in all aspects. While the focus of the organization is sexual safety and sexual empowerment, we believe that many things are incorporated in those issues and are open to addressing anything that effects the lives of women. Our to focuses/ on-going campaigns are Sexual Safety and Empowerment through Knowledge. The ongoing slogan that we are using currently for many project is "Choice is Power."

Laura McClelland, executive board member of SASSE said, "Our two campaigns that will be implemented starting next Fall are "F is for Feminism," addressing issues and needs surrounding the feminist community and women's experience at SU, and 'Pussies to the Polls,' educating women about the necessity of their presence at the voting polls in November."

Upcoming Events

  • The next rank test will be held on May 29th at 2:00 PM. Good luck to all of those who are testing!
  • The National Women's Martial Arts Federation annual training camp, Special Training '04, will be held July 15-18 at Stonehill College in Easton, Massachusetts. Stonehill College is 20 miles south of Boston. This year's theme is "Strong Circles - Self, Community, World".  All Kicks' students are encouraged to attend.

ITU Seminar a Hit!

We were honored to have Master Tom Merritt and Master Lucy Hanson at our last rank test on April 20th. Along with overseeing the test, Master Merritt taught two seminars on Tae Kwon Do form and technique. Kick

Master Merritt is the youngest seventh degree black belt in North America and is the founder and president of the International Tae Kwon Do Union (ITU). The ITU was formed in retaliation to increasing internal "politics" in martial arts organizations. The ITU promises a "politics free" environment. According to Master Merritt, "I started the ITU because other major organizations are politically influenced and unaffordable. The ITU is based on a philosophy of no favoritism and openly accepts practioners from all different kwans."

As the first male instructor to ever be invited to Kicks, Master Merritt said, "I am very honored to be here. It means a great deal to me to be the first male to teach at Kicks."  Master Merritt went on to comment that, In his more than 20 years of martial arts training, "Kicks students are some of the finest Tae Kwon Do students I've ever seen."
Target Practice

Kicks director, Laura Kamienski, was re-certified as an International Tae Kwon Do Union instructor during the course of the events. "I am extraordinarily proud to be affiliated with the ITU. Master Merritt sets a new standard for all martial artists, female and male," said Sabum Nim Kamienski.

Lindsey "kicks it up" at the April 20th rank testing.
Bucknell Sirens - 
A women's group on campus....calling for change

Sirens was created in the Fall of 1999 by Women's Studies students who felt that women's voices were underrepresented on campus. Sirens aims to organize events with the intent of raising awareness about gender equality and the welfare of Bucknell's women.

Various students have commented on the lack of diversity on Bucknell's campus and because of this have felt pressure not to be who they truly are. Sirens aims to break away at the barriers that prevent women from feeling like they have to act a particular way and, at the same time, increase education about the way women's roles have been determined and how they are often times incomplete.
In the past 4 years Sirens has:

  • hosted a brown bag lunch series featuring different women faculty and staff members
  • held fiction and poetry readings, discussions, and slams
  • helped sponsor various marches to DC concerning women's health issues
  • hosted an Inner Beauty Pageant celebrating all forms of beauty at Bucknell
  • sponsored a film series on different aspects of respect
  • helped with campus displays concerning body image
  • hosted annual spring picnics during Diversity Week.
alyssa     Alyssa Schneebaum, a Kicks' Blue Belt, is the incoming president of Sirens for the Fall of 2004. According to Schneebaum, "I think the main purpose of Sirens is to recognize that a definite patriarchy exists in our society. We unify to understand and breakdown the sexism that pervades our community and our world, and then take political and social action advancing the power of women. We acknowledge that sexism is not just something that some people do; it is a system. We fight to eliminate this structure by examining how it works and what its consequences are, and by counterattacking those circumstances with female-righteous events, campaigns, publicity, action, and exposure."

Kicks Rank Promotions

Junior Promotions:
  • Gold Belt:  Kyra
Senior Promotions:
  • Orange Belt: Jillian
  • Green Belt: Molly
  • Blue Belt: Alyssa, Katie, Kristen, Lindsey
  • Red Belt: Gaby, Julie
  A special congratulations to Gaby who earned a medal for her outstanding Perseverance.


A special congratulations to Katie who earned a medal for her outstanding performance in  Breaking.

A special congratulations to Junior Student of the Month - Joanna
You can check out more test photos by clicking here.

Cool Link
of the Month

V-Day is a global movement to end violence against women and girls. V-Day is a catalyst that promotes creative events to increase awareness, raise money, and revitalize the spirit of existing anti-violence organizations. V-Day generates broader attention for the fight to stop worldwide violence against women and girls including rape, battery, incest, female genital mutilation (FGM), and sexual slavery.

Through V-Day campaigns, local volunteers and college students produce annual benefit performances of "The Vagina Monologues" to raise awareness and funds for anti-violence groups within their own communities.  In 2003, over 1,000 V-Day benefit events were presented by volunteer activists around the world, educating millions of people about the reality of violence against women and girls and raising US$4 million to combat it.

The 'V' in V-Day stands for Victory, Valentine and Vagina.

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