GU Women in Leadership to hold 2014 Summit this April

On Saturday, April 12, Georgetown University Women in Leadership will be holding their inaugural “Own It” Leadership Summit, featuring speakers such as eBay CMO Richelle Parham, CBS This Morning co-host Norah O’Donnell, and US Ambassador for Global women’s issues Melanne Verveer.

The summit is a day-long affair with registration at 8 a.m. and closing remarks at 5 p.m. in the Lorhfink Auditorium. It is broken down into four major panels, each with an in-depth focus on a distinct career field: STEM, business, media, and policy, as well as two experiential sessions mixed in between. These experiential sessions give the Summit participants the option to attend either a breakout, office hour, or workshop based on what best suits their interest and provides for interactive, engaging face-time with the conference’s speakers.

“[Students] don’t just want to sit in an auditorium for hours on end listening to people talk at them,” said GUWIL Summit Co-Chair Kendall Ciesemier (COL ’15). “[GUWIL] really wanted to make an event that would bring in powerhouse women from all different kinds of industries so everyone could feel like they are represented with what they would want to do after college and provide a different perspective on a job in a field they are interested in.”

Ciesemier also points out that a lot of the work GUWIL does is inspired by the Lean In movement based off of Cheryl Sandberg’s bestseller, Lean In. “It is harder for women to find healthy mentoring relationships,” she said. By bringing in numerous prolific women, GUWIL hopes to spark meaningful connections between the speakers and the attendees.

In addition to having accomplished female leaders, the organization also wanted ones who had an invested interest in the campus, as many of them are Hoyas themselves. “I would say over 50 percent of our speakers are alumni,” said Ciesemier. “We have really discovered amazing people who are in our network.”

GUWIL itself was conceived in the spring of 2013 by then-freshman co-founders Ava Arroyo (SFS ’16) and Alana Snyder (COL ’16). Its mission as an organization is to “provide undergraduate women of all GU schools with the necessary resources to excel in the workforce” with a focus on three main areas: careers, connections, and community. According to Ciesemier, plans to create a female undergraduate summit to promote these goals quickly materialized in May, and she along with fellow Summit co-chair Helen Brosnan (SFS ’16) have been managing the organizational process ever since.

Tickets for the Summit go on sale here on the website this Friday, Feb. 28 for $20. And for any readers who abhor career-oriented workshops or networking events, Vox was also informed that there will be a spoken word poet performing at the event and that Cafe Bonaparte is bringing in free crepes (who could turn down a free crepe?!).

Photo: GU Women in Leadership via Facebook

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