CDRS and the Athena Center for Leadership Studies Launch New Undergraduate Journal On Our Terms
NEW YORK, June 7, 2013 –

The Center for Digital Research and Scholarship (CDRS) is proud to announce the launch of On Our Terms, the undergraduate journal of the Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College. On Our Terms is an online, peer-reviewed, academic journal of women and leadership created by Barnard College students, who aim to "provide a platform for global student thought and debate seeking to enhance our generation’s discourse on the theme." The journal features scholarship by undergraduates from around the world, publishes both original academic articles and multimedia pieces, and is published twice each year in April and in November. Five pieces from themes ranging from community organizing to cyberfeminism were selected for the Spring 2013 issue, and can be freely read on the On Our Terms website here.

CDRS worked with the Athena Center and Barnard Library & Academic Information Services (BLAIS) to design, develop, and host the On Our Terms website at, as well as provide regular consultation on website updates, marketing, and social media for the journal (the On Our Terms Twitter feed is updated daily.) CDRS runs the On Our Terms site through Open Journals Systems (OJS), an open source journal management and publishing system that enables the On Our Terms editors to make all their journal content open access and freely accessible to the public.

On Our Terms was born out of a conversation in 2011 between outgoing Editor-in-Chief and Barnard College ‘13 student Lauren Seaman and Dr Abigail Lewis, Associate Director of the Athena Center and Program Director of the Athena Scholars Program. The Athena Center for Leadership Studies had been wanting to expand student programs and enable greater participation in Athena projects for some time, and starting up a new journal to enhance undergraduate discourse on the theme of leadership was an ideal way to do this. A four-student-strong editorial board of Barnard College undergraduates was established - Lauren Seaman, Jennifer Fearon, Jessica Gingrich, and Lauren Wingenroth, along with a steering committee consisting of the Athena Center, CDRS, and Barnard Library. Faculty reviewers stretch from New York to California to Sweden, which has enabled the On Our Terms editors to foster a truly global dialogue on women’s leadership.

Seaman said of the journal’s launch: “The conversation on women and leadership has, until now, been directed and defined by those already in leadership positions who think about authority. Launching On Our Terms is important for undergraduates because they don't usually have forums to put their work - they usually just write a paper and don't know what to do with it. What is really valuable about this journal on women's leadership is that it enables undergraduates to be authorized, feel a sense of agency, and contribute to the larger, worldwide discussion that defines what leadership means today.”

Fearon, On Our Terms Managing Editor and fellow Barnard College ‘13 student, emphasized the importance of undergraduates joining the debate on women and leadership. “Academic discussions on women and leadership are happening all over the world, and On Our Terms gives undergraduates a forum to join the debate. Those of us on the editorial team have had an incredibly enriching experience in that we as students have been handed so much power and ownership - we’ve been able to build the journal from the ground up ourselves, and truly set its tone.”

Lewis commented on the milestone: “The launch of On Our Terms is an exciting venture because, for the first time, it is the undergraduate voice provoking this academic discourse on the burgeoning field of women’s leadership.  At the Athena Center for Leadership Studies, we are dedicated to fostering research and public dialogue that re-imagines our understanding of leadership, and On Our Terms does just this by providing a fully accessible platform for interdisciplinary scholarship. The editorial team has transformed their powerful vision into an active discussion, and they are a true inspiration to undergraduates around the world for having created a space for the ideas of young women leaders to incubate, develop, and be heard.”

Rebecca Kennison, CDRS Director, added: "Partnering with the Athena Center for Leadership Studies to create a new undergraduate platform for open scholarship has been enormously exciting, not simply because it enables students here to join the academic debate on women and leadership, but because the open format of the journal and global reach of submissions means the discussion can extend well beyond the campus gates and engage those debating these topics around the world. We are proud to have built a platform that enables younger scholars to contribute to such important, relevant discussions on the nature of leadership.”

Undergraduates and recent graduates are now invited to submit their work for the Fall 2013 issue of On Our Terms. Submissions must be undergraduate research, which can be from all disciplines in the humanities, social sciences, and the STEM fields that inform readership on the topic. Pieces that promote the exercise of leadership skills such as advocacy, ambition, communication, entrepreneurship, leverage, resilience, and vision are encouraged. To review the submission requirements and deadlines, please visit the On Our Terms website.


On Our Terms

On Our Terms is an online, peer-reviewed, academic journal of women and leadership.  Produced under the auspices of the Athena Center for Leadership Studies at Barnard College, this publication features scholarship by undergraduates from across the globe seeking to enhance our generation’s discourse on the theme. The journal created for students, by students, and goal of the editors is to provide a platform for student thought, debate, and voice through the publication of original academic articles and multimedia pieces.

The Athena Center for Leadership Studies

Established at Barnard College in 2009, the Athena Center for Leadership Studies is dedicated to the advancement of women’s leadership around the world. We create and promote innovative approaches to leadership development; we educate and develop new generations of women leaders; we challenge - and change - cultural stereotypes of leaders; and we foster research and public dialogue that expands our understanding of leadership. A special initiative of Barnard President Debora Spar, the Athena Center is directed by Kathryn Kolbert, a public-interest attorney and journalist, who brings to Barnard an impressive record of collaborative leadership, educational programming, and civil-rights advocacy. For more information, visit

The Center for Digital Research and Scholarship (CDRS) partners with researchers and scholars to share new knowledge. Using innovative new media and digital technologies, CDRS empowers Columbia's research community with the online tools and services necessary to make the most of scholarly communication, collaboration, data-sharing, and preservation. More information about their services and projects is available at CDRS is part of the Digital Programs and Technology Services division of Columbia University Libraries/Information Services.

Columbia University Libraries/Information Services is one of the top five academic research library systems in North America. The collections include over 11 million volumes, over 150,000 journals and serials, as well as extensive electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, maps, and graphic and audio-visual materials. The services and collections are organized into 22 libraries and various academic technology centers. The Libraries employs more than 500 professional and support staff. The website of the Libraries is the gateway to its services and resources:

Barnard Library

The Barnard Library and Academic Information Services unit advances the mission of Barnard College by supporting excellence and innovation in teaching and learning. It provides information resources and instructional support services that establish a foundation for intellectual inquiry, ethical scholarship, lifelong learning and the dissemination of knowledge.


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