Propelling Women into Professional Leadership Positions

Spring 2018 Issue

Inspired by a financial challenge from members of the Board of Trustees, Susquehanna University has launched the Women’s Leadership Initiative.

In an effort to raise $3 million, funding is structured as a four-year challenge. Signe S. Gates ’71, chair of the Board of Trustees, and Dawn Grigg ’68 Mueller, board vice chair, have pledged $250,000 each year for the next four years—a $1 million challenge gift. To claim their generous challenge, other donors must contribute a collective total of $500,000 each year for the next four years, for an additional $2 million. All challenge-eligible gifts will support Women’s Leadership Initiative programs.

The Women’s Leadership Initiative will:

  • Provide every female student with up to two university-supported, professional opportunities during her four years at Susquehanna. Many non-business fields do not offer paid internships or positions. Eliminating financial barriers will place Susquehanna women in work-related environments earlier, creating opportunities for them to gain experience, build connections with professionals and position themselves for future success.
  • Support a robust, four-year preparation plan for every female student that includes up to two funded opportunities for conference and workshop participation, career treks into major cities, job-shadowing experiences to connect with alumni, and the chance to gain skills in areas like public speaking, personalfinancial planning and work/life balance. Building competency in these areas will make Susquehanna women more competitive for highly sought roles and more productive in those roles from the start.
  • Create meaningful connections with at least five alumni, per student, by graduation. Whether by academic program, cocurricular activity, industry or other affiliation, Susquehanna will foster stronger connections between students and alumni that benefit all.
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