Applications are now being accepted for Women in Learning and Leadership (WILL) at Brookdale – a cohort-based program that will provide female undergraduates with a wide range of new academic and career enhancement opportunities.
Beginning this fall, WILL members will be able to take advantage of new leadership-driven coursework, internships, service learning opportunities, campus events and other initiatives designed to prepare graduates to become leaders in their careers and their communities.
“Despite our progress in education, social and economic development, there remains an astounding leadership gap and ‘visible invisibility’ for women leaders in both our public and private sectors,” said associate English Professor Roseanne Alvarez, co-coordinator of WILL @Brookdale. “This program provides the leadership training and experiences that our students need and deserve.”
According to the Center for American Progress, women make up nearly 51 percent of the U.S. population and hold almost 52 percent of all professional level jobs. In leadership positions, however, they lag substantially behind men: women represent only 14.6 percent of the nation’s executive officers, 8.1 percent of top earners and 4.6 percent of Fortune 500 CEOs.
In addition to cohort-based coursework in women’s and gender studies, WILL @Brookdale will provide new mentorship, networking and career training opportunities in partnership with the college’s Career Services division and partner organizations at the state and national level. There will also be a new student-run WILL organization on campus.
“One of the goals of WILL is to help our emerging female leaders make connections in the classroom, at the college, but even more importantly, in our community where they will eventually make the greatest impact,” said associate English Professor Margaret Natter, who will be teaching the first WILL section of HUMN 129 in the fall. “Mentors will teach WILL members how to be diplomatic problem-solvers who get things done. Let’s face it: all companies and organizations needs people like that on their teams.”
The program is modeled after the goals established by the National Network of Collegiate Women’s Leadership Programs. WILL @Brookdale, however, is specifically tailored to the college’s diverse student body and is flexible enough to accommodate students who work while attending school. It also places a high priority on building practical skills that will transfer to the next level, Alvarez said.
“That ‘experiential’ component is what sets this program apart,” she said. “We’re not just working to build confidence and a skill set; we’re helping build resumes.”
For more information on WILL @Brookdale or to submit your application, click here.
PHOTO: Professor Roseanne Alvarez of Brookdale Community College with students Barbara Lorenza (left) and Amy Lee Carrino (right) at the New Jersey Women’s and Gender Studies Consortium (NJWGSC) Annual Undergraduate Student Colloquium at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ).