- The Washington Times - Friday, January 13, 2017

Students at the University of Southern California have decided that groups for women fail to empower transgender members.

USC’s “Women’s Student Assembly” is no more. It has transitioned to the Student Assembly for Gender Empowerment (SAGE) after undergraduate members unanimously decided the word “women” did not foster an inclusive atmosphere.

“Our mission statement recognizes that we do not just cater to female-identified students, but also cater to students of all gender identities,” SAGE Assistant Director Maddie Hengst told The Daily Trojan on Wednesday. “We also don’t want to alienate any of our constituency by focusing exclusively on women.”

The school’s website says the group’s core mission is to “address feminist issues, to engage the community, and to dismantle oppressive structures of power.”

Some members of the newly minted SAGE told the newspaper they were not sure why a separate group for transgender students was not created, or if a change in focus would needlessly duplicate work done by the Queer and Ally Student Assembly.

“Gender identity and sexual orientation identity are different things,” student senator Kate Oh said. “There might be overlap, but there shouldn’t be any encroachment.”

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