The Award Winning Newspaper Of Pace University


The Award Winning Newspaper Of Pace University


The Award Winning Newspaper Of Pace University


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Pace University Hosts Award-Winning Journalist Allison Gilbert

Cover of Listen, World! By Julia Scheers and Allison Gilbert. Published in 2022.
Cover of Listen, World! By Julia Scheers and Allison Gilbert. Published in 2022.

This past Tuesday, the Alumnae Engagement Committee (AEC) welcomed award-winning journalist Allison Gilbert for a conversation about her new book, Listen, World! It tells the story of Elsie Robinson, a newspaper columnist who became one of the most-read women in the country, garnering more than 20 million readers.  

Gilbert sat down in Gottesman with Dr. Hillary J. Knepper, the Associate Provost for Student of Success to discuss her book, in a celebration of Women’s History Month. She spoke about perseverance and willing your dreams to come true, attributing this back to Elsie Robinson’s character. 

Author Allison Gilbert sat across from Q&A Host Professor Hillary J. Knapper in conversation about Listen, World! (Leanna Ward)

 Elise Robison was a single mother living in poverty who worked to support her chronically ill son, who dreamed of being a writer. The book details how against all odds, she made that dream a reality in a world where women faced hardships day after day. 

Megan MacMeekin is the Assistant Director of Alumni Relations who played a big part in setting this event up. She had read Gilbert’s book and had this to say about it. “I thought the book was both illuminating and entertaining,”  

  It talked about a fascinating time in the history of the country (the dawn of women’s freedom from the strict confines of their expected lifestyles as wives and mothers, and the opposing cultures of the free-spirited California and traditional values of the Northeast), as well as how Elsie was compelled to make her own way in a society that didn’t yet accept or understand the value of a woman’s contributions.” 

 The AEC was established over two years ago, with its main objective to provide scholarship support for female students. In the Fall of 2023, they launched the Empowering Women Scholarship Fund. Kim Turner is the Sr. Major Gifts officer at the AEC and spoke about what it does for female students at Pace.  

“The AEC is committed to supporting women students of Pace to help defray some of the financial burdens of their college education through the scholarship awards, and to strengthen ties between students and alumni,” Turner said. “The AEC awarded its first scholarship awards in the ’23-’24 academic year to two women students, who also have mentoring opportunities available to them.” 

Shonette Carew is the Chair of the AEC and a ‘96 Pace graduate. She has been the leader in setting the course for the committee and talked about the process for making this event a reality.  

She said, “We wanted to do something in honor of Women’s History Month in honor of the Alumnae Engagement Committee, which is the Alumnae Committee for women, and so probably about 6 or 8 months ago we started thinking about what would be of interest to an audience, and a mixed audience,” Carew said. “Not just alumni, not just educators, but the Pace Community. So, we got a recommendation for an author that was here in Westchester, and we looked at her book and we thought this is amazing because it’s about female empowerment and setting yourself up and finding your place. That’s how it came together, and between the help from Alumni relations and the development office, we got the people, the place, the time, and now we’re here.” 

Carew then began to talk about the message they wanted to send with this event, especially to college students. 

“What I want is for people to understand that there’s a place, because while this is an event designed around women, the themes are not only for women,” Carew continued. “So I think it’s really about understanding how you can find empowerment in a place, and a conversation fitting in – because for everybody that’s different. Especially like I said, it’s the Alumnae Engagement Committee, we’re about women, but I want you to take away something that says ‘Here’s who I am.’ College is a really pivotal time for people to figure out where they fit in. So I feel like these conversations are always good, whether you’re a freshman or a senior. You’re going to be looking for that. So that’s what I’m hoping people take away.” 

Listen, World! is available to purchase at the Pleasantville Bookstore and Barnes & Noble, as well as online. 

Graphic from the event featuring author Allison Gilbert, Q&A Host Professor Hillary J. Knapper, and Chair of the Alumnae Engagement Committee Shonette Carew.


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