Thursday, March 7, 2024

Stern Center, Great Room, 7 p.m.

Livestream Link

Gender Week Keynote

Breaking Barriers: A Journey of Empowering Women through Self-Discovery, Equality, and Resilience

Hagir Elsheikh,  author and entrepreneur

Gender inequality is not an isolated phenomenon; we need to analyze the social, cultural, and political factors that contribute to the subsequent oppression of women’s rights and, in turn, affect how women view, interact with, and love themselves and the world around them. It calls for the recognition of women’s rights as human rights and challenges the pervasive societal belief that women are to be regulated and kept under men’s supervision, perpetuated through politics, education, and cultural norms. The interconnected challenges of gender equality, feminist movements, patriarchy, authoritarian regimes, and reproductive rights are highlighted, urging a directional shift in societal progress. A book sale and signing will follow the presentation.

This program is sponsored by the Clarke Forum for Contemporary Issues and co-sponsored by the Women’s & Gender Resource Center, the Middle East Studies Program and the Department of Africana Studies. It is also part of the Clarke Forum’s Leadership in an Age of Uncertainty Series.

Biography (provided by the speaker)

Photo of Hagir ElsheikhHagir Elsheikh, is chairwoman and CEO of Hagir Network, serial entrepreneur, motivational speaker, political analyst, talk show host, producer, author & philanthropist. She is founder/CEO of HSE Staffing Agency LLC and Tomorrow’s Smile, Inc. Host of The Hagir Show, and co-host of T.S.O Live Talk Show. Elsheikh is a domestic violence counselor of Tomorrow’s Smile, Inc., board of trustees member of HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College, and board of trustees member of CWS, Church World Services. She is a women’s rights activist/advocate and a motivational speaker for Tomorrow’s Smile and a volunteer for Meals On Wheels America and Neighbors Speaker’s Bureau-CWS, Church World Services. She is a former clinical instructor/faculty at HACC, a former board member of Capital Area Coalition on Homelessness and a former CPR/First Aid/AED instructor for American Red Cross.

Hagir is best known for her human rights, women’s rights, domestic violence, and immigration advocacy. She was recognized in 2017 by the Central Penn Business Journal (CPBJ) as a “Woman of Influence.” She was featured in many magazines, newspapers, documentaries, and TV shows in the US and internationally. Hagir was also the recipient of the health care hero award in 2017.

Hagir’s company, HSE Staffing Agency, was named Readers’ Choice Simply the Best Staffing Agency in Central Pennsylvania in 2017 and 2018. Hagir was honored by the state of Pennsylvania in 2018 on their Year of the Woman Recognition. She was also inducted into the GCU Hall of Fame, representing the College of Nursing 2019. In August 2019, she was named Simply the Best Community Activist as the winner of the “Simply the Best People Award in Central PA.” She was the HACC Distinguish Alumni Award Recipient in 2019.

In March 2020 she was on the cover of the Business Women’s Magazine, and a short story was done about her life and achievements. Hagir published her memoir Through Tragedy and Triumph: A Life Well Traveled, and it is available on Amazon.

Hagir’s company, HSE Staffing, is a top nominee for the 2021 Best Place to Work. She was honored by PennLive and the Patriot-News for Black history month 2022. She was the recipient of The ALC Black Excellence Community Service Award in 2023. She was also honored in 2023 and placed in the Women’s History Garden by the WACOH and the Civic Club of Harrisburg.