The Plaza

We usually show appreciation for the women most important to us in personal ways — a kind word, a thoughtful note, a special gift. Rarely do we have the opportunity to honor women publicly and to celebrate their lives permanently.

Now, you can honor your own heroines in a lasting and public way in the Plaza of Heroines at Wichita State University. Located in the heart of the WSU campus, the Plaza is open to anyone interested in honoring a woman, living or deceased, with an engraved brick or granite paver, or a Plaza tree. Individuals, families, groups organizations, or businesses, regardless of affiliation with WSU, are welcome to pay loving tribute to women they wish to recognize as heroines.

The Plaza of Heroines is a circular plaza contructed with engraved bricks and granite pavers which permanently record the names of women honored as heroines. A sweep of engraved granite benches defines the space and compliments the Plaza's focal point — a bronze sculpture by Sophia Vari entitled Danseuse Espagnole ("Spanish Dancer"). Lush landscaping highlights the Plaza's eight Paperbark Maples with engraved bronze plaques. Surrounded by Ablah Library, Jabara Hall, Grace Memorial Chapel, and Clinton Hall, the Plaza was dedicated on September 19, 1998, and serves as a stunning addition to the University and to the Wichita community.

Adding a personal and unique dimension to the names engraved on brick and granite is the Plaza written tributes and photographs submitted for each heroine. These are accessible here, on the Plaza of Heroines web site. The written tributes bring meaning and vitality to the Plaza while preserving women's lives.

Proceeds from the Plaza project benefit the WSU Center for Women's Studies scholarship fund and many of the Center's community outreach activities. Contributions to the Plaza help to inspire tomorrow's heroines and ensure future opportunities in education and leadership for WSU students.

More than 1,000 women have already been honored in the Plaza of Heroines. You can explore these tributes on this web site. As you read them, consider whom you want to honor in the Plaza of Heroines.