In celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX, a panel discussion regarding the milestone gender-equity law and its impact will be held at 12:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8, in the North End Zone facility at Missouri Southern State University.

Passed in 1972, the law states: “No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”

The event will look at the effect the law had on athletics and academics, both nationally and at Missouri Southern.

“We’ll have a panel of current and former MSSU employees, representing both academics and athletics,” said Tamika Harrel, the university’s Title IX coordinator. “It’s a way for people to learn about Title IX and how it played out here.”

Panelists will include: Sallie Beard, a former coach and athletics director at MSSU, who initiated the women’s sports program; Dr. Pat Lipira, who served as softball coach from 1982-2000 and later as the university’s interim vice president for academic affairs; Dr. Julie Wengert, associate vice president for student success; and Dr. Megan Bever, associate professor of history and chair of the Social Science Department.

The 90-minute program will include a question-and-answer session, said Harrel, and hors d’oeuvres will be available. The event is free and open to the public.