Interviewee: Joanne Cox
IWY SC 573
Interviewer: Elaine Mayo Paul
Date: June 10-11, 1977
Joanne Cox was from Columbia, South Carolina and worked at Midlands Technical College. Cox worked for the Special Services Project, a federal initiative working with disadvantaged students. Cox had a number of diverse interests and attended the conference to learn more about subjects like “women in non-traditional roles” and “women getting positions of prestige.” Interview includes discussion of: Cox’s impression of the conference as disappointing and boring at times and her belief that too much energy was spent on selecting the Houston delegation rather than on women’s workshops.
Joanne Cox: For identification?
Elaine Mayo Paul: Yes.
EP: Would you tell me your name please?
JC: I’m Joanne Cox.
EP: And from?
JC: I’m here in Columbia and I work at Midlands Technical College with Special Services Project, which works with disadvantaged students.
EP: I see.
JC: A federal project.
EP: And why did you come to the conference?
JC: I came to the conference mainly to work with issues surrounding women in a number of different areas and I also had recommended to a number of my women students that this would be a good opportunity to develop some skills in these areas and be exposed to a number of women who has achieved at a certain level so they could feel better about themselves and their own opportunities, you know, regardless of obstacles.
EP: Mmhm. Did you get students here?
JC: A couple of them are here and they have left and I am very disappointed.
EP: (unintelligible at 0:51)
JC: I feel like so far today that the agenda has dragged on quite a bit. That the schedule has not been met. That I have an extreme interest in the use of media in working with these people and that has been sort of side-stepped in light of other issues. I feel like the delegation going to Houston is important, however, so much emphasis has been placed on that, that it’s taken away from a more well-rounded picture of how this time could be used. And I’ve run into a number of people that are leaving, have been leaving all during afternoon into the evening and I think that’s unfortunate.
EP: How would you assess the mood of the convention?
JC: Restless, disappointed, bored. You know, not feeling like what they were looking for was really here.
EP: Mmhm. Let’s take another tack.
EP: How did you first come to be really concerned about women’s issues?
JC: I guess in my own personal life and being a single parent. At this point, going back into the professional world and counseling in this area and working with a number of women going through struggles in terms of reaching their own identity after divorce or separation, having children and trying to get back into (unintelligible at 2:24).
EP: Are you a resource person tomorrow?
JC: No, I’m not. (Laughter)
EP: Well, I bet you’ll be in that particular workshop.
JC: Mmhm, yeah.
EP: Which workshops did you have in your mind?
JC: I wanted to get “The Woman in Non-traditional Roles.”
EP: I like that.
JC: And I think it’s “Women Getting Positions of Prestige” or something along those lines.
EP: It’s a leadership thing?
JC: Yes, uh-huh. Thanks for taking an interest in that.
EP: They do. They do something very good and they do have some good resource people. Is there any other comment that you’d like to add?
JC: No, I just feel like at this point I should make my feelings known to someone.
EP: I do too.
JC: And I plan to do that, you know, in terms of not letting myself get this upset about it and now acting on my feelings. So I’ll do that.
EP: You’re acting right now because this is going to the archives.
JC: Yeah. Mmhm. Well, that’s important. I’m glad you asked me to do that.
EP: I’m glad you did it.
EP: And I do thank you very much.
End of Interview