Inaugural Women’s Leadership Experience
The inaugural Women’s Leadership Experience concluded on November 8, 2018. The Women’s Leadership Experience is a program leadership development program specifically for women. Throughout the semester, the women discussed women’s issues, common challenges that women leaders face, and how they can overcome those challenges to lead confidently in their communities. The program also included a half-day retreat where the women got to know each other, guest speakers, and a panel of prominent women leaders on campus. In its first year, fourteen women participated in the entire six-week experience and celebrated their completion by receiving certificates and eating cake in their last meeting.
Not only did the women who completed the program gain valuable knowledge, but it also proved a learning experience for second year Graduate Assistant, Ugonna Ume. As Graduate Assistant in the Leadership Programs Office, Ugo wanted to create an administer a new program that would bring diversity to types of programs the office offered. With that, the Women’s Leadership Experience was born.
“This program was really a passion project for me. It provided an opportunity to blend my love for leadership development, social justice, and women’s issues. I wanted there to be a space for women to gain leadership skills, but also share their personal experiences.”
– Ugonna Ume, Graduate Assistant
The Women’s Leadership Experience was instead offered as a co curricular program where any women could join regardless of class level, GPA, or academic program. “It was important for the Women’s Leadership Experience to be open and accessible for all women.” said Ume.
Although the first program was viewed as a success, the Leadership Programs Office is excited for the future of the program. Their goal is to get more students involved with it and increase partnerships with women leaders around campus. “This year’s program was great, but I would love to get twice as many women involved in the future” said Chris Leary, Student Affairs Advisor in Leadership Programs Office and Ugonna’s supervisor. “I am excited really excited to see what we can do in the future.”
The Women’s Leadership Experience is an annual program and will return in the fall of 2019. Check back then for more information on program registration.