On Wednesday, Dec. 1, FEME and Student Association (SA) hosted a Women in Leadership event. It was offered both online and in person.
Corena Kalinin, a graphic de- sign junior and new member in- take coordinator for FEME, and Rhossa Babelle Umutoniwase, a biomedical science junior and di- versity chair for SA, were the in person hosts for the event.
FEME President, international studies junior Katie Zeits, hosted those who attended online.
“We wanted to bring awareness to the issues that women in leadership positions face so change can one day happen,” said Kalinin.
The event started with introductions and then moved onto the first activity.
Participants were given a checklist of items such as, “someone has taken credit for an original idea of mine,” and “I
have been called ‘overbearing’, or ‘bossy’ for demonstrating leadership.”
Each person checked the items to which they were experienced and then the papers were passed around anonymously to see what others have experienced compared to oneself.
This lead to a discussion about the checklist items.
Next, attendees were split into groups and each group was given a scenario.
Some scenarios were “you’re a senior leader who identifies as female and your ideas are shot down and ridiculed” or “at a family gathering relatives ask about your plans to get married, have a successful man, and have kids, even though you have goals of higher education and job aspirations.”
The groups discussed their feelings about their prompts to everyone in at- tendance, which lead to open discussion about how to overcome these situations, mistreatment due to gender identity, and double standards.
The event ended with a mind map about things learned from this event.
“I care about these issues and overcoming them, and I hope with events like these we can make a change,” Babelle Umutoniwase said.
Joy Bonke, professional and technical writing fifth-year, was one of the people in attendance.
“I appreciated hearing other people’s experiences in the workplace. One of the important themes that I took from the dis- cussion was to lean on other women and learn from them,” she said.
FEME and SA hope to do more work- shops like these next semester and get more people involved to discuss these pressing and pertinent issues.
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