Meredith College was a sponsor of the Women’s Leadership Conference, an annual event designed to support and advance women. The conference, which took place on March 23, was presented by the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce and has grown from 400 attendees in its first year to over 750 participants in 2017.
Meredith was well represented at the conference. Adrienne Cole, ’93, the Chamber’s new president and CEO, welcomed the attendees and was one of four women executives who participated in the lead panel discussion. Anne York, professor of economics at Meredith, facilitated a panel at the conference that focused on “Breaking Down Biases.” Michelle Rich Goode,’73, was part of another panel discussion titled “What’s Next: Risks and Rewards.”
In addition, Meredith students, faculty, and staff were invited to participate in the conference as a benefit of Meredith’s gold-level sponsorship. The College also had an undergraduate and graduate recruitment presence.
Maryam Ahmed, ’17, a mathematics and computer science major at Meredith, was particularly excited for the opportunity to meet the keynote speaker: Reshma Saujani, founder and CEO of Girls Who Code, a national nonprofit organization working to close the gender gap in technology. Ahmed, who has already accepted a job in her field, said she found the entire conference valuable.
“I really enjoyed hearing from women with very diverse perspectives. I gained motivation, encouragement, and practical advice for making the most of my education, starting my career, and being a leader in all facets of my life,” said Ahmed.
Monica McKinney, professor of education and director of graduate programs, was inspired by the large crowd of women who were all talking about ways to tackle problems and encourage one another. She said she was taking away a number of ideas both for her own professional development and for the College.
“I really liked the variety of people from across campus who were able to come. I also appreciated the decision to send students to the conference,” said McKinney.
Other Meredith staff and faculty who attended the event were Karen Brenneman, Jennie Robinson, Linda Carter, Gaye Hill, Candice Webb, Donna Battle, Grace Sugg, and Emily Parker. In addition to Maryam Ahmed, MBA student Josette Roten also attended the conference.