By: Melissa Boneta
The Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship is launching its Women’s Success Series on April 19 in the Carl DeSantis Building room 3000 from 6-8 p.m. According to advertising for the event, students will have the opportunity to learn from women leaders across South Florida about getting their career on the right path or taking their career to the next level.
Kathleen O’Leary, associate professor of marketing at the Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship and one of the advisors for the Women’s Success Series, said that this is something that can be beneficial to young women, not just to women in one college or even NSU, but across the spectrum of females in the workforce.
O’Leary said, “When you get into the workplace there are gender issues. There’s been a lot of research done and it’s been found that women don’t negotiate like men do. Therefore, the statistics show that women start with a much lower salary because it’s not something they’re comfortable with. We wanted to run a series of seminars inviting local women business leaders to talk to our female students.”
Andria Cunningham, professor at the Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship and one of the advisers for the Women’s Success Series, said that the program began as a conversation between faculty at the Huizenga College of Business and Entrepreneurship. They toyed around with the idea a couple of years ago about the importance of a women’s program for our students. Cunningham heard about this idea and helped make it happen.
“If there is one thing I want to see students take from this series is to feel empowered and to walk out and feel like they can be assertive when they’re negotiating a salary or asking for a raise or looking for a new opportunity,” Cunningham said.
The event take the format of a panel discussion followed by a breakout session of one-on-one interactions with business leaders and faculty members. Tracy Miller from Miller Construction will be discussing overcoming doubt. Judy Walker, vice president of marketing at Anago Cleaning Systems, will talk about marketing. Other speakers will discuss franchising and leadership skills along with other topics related to women in the workforce.
Cunningham said, “I think this is important because, as women, we talk about the need for women to have equal pay, but we don’t look at the challenges and the opportunities for growth that women have, and one of those is women not being as assertive. Women not going and asking for the same pay.”
The series is aimed at being an inclusive space for all students from all disciplines across NSU to join and be a part of the discussion. According to Cunningham, although it is geared for women, men need to be aware of the series as well.
O’Leary said, “The bottom line is we want our students to be successful and we want them to get good jobs. This is one way we can help do that… Men are invited too. I just got up in my faculty meeting and said, ‘Look, you men are invited.’ [Men] all have mothers, sisters, wives, girlfriends; they’re all in the workforce so it’d help them to understand these differences also.”
For additional information, students can contact Andria Cunningham at 954-262-5007. To RSVP, students can email Kedene Smith at firstname.lastname@example.org.