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Women In Leadership at Northwestern

By Katie Ring on Tuesday, August 7, 2018


In America, female students have recently started to outnumber male students in post-secondary education. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, in 2016 women earned 57% of all undergraduate degrees, 59% of master’s degrees, and 53% of doctoral degrees. However, women are still consistently underrepresented in leadership roles in the workplace and church. Leadership cultures are changing but there is still a need for mentorship and encouragement for women leaders. 

The Impact of Mentorship

Like countless other women, I have faced judgment, insults, and outright harassment because of my gender, and often felt powerless to change this. However, as the recent social movements like Time’s Up and #MeToo gained momentum, so did my passion for change. When I came to Northwestern, I met Career Development Director, April Stensgard, who had just returned from a conference on women in leadership. She encouraged me to get involved and start a group on campus. I also connected with like-minded female classmates who shared my concern, including Lindsey Zaic and Brianna Silvers. 

Last spring, we put our vision into action and launched Northwestern’s first Women in Leadership club. Through this club, we hope to empower our female classmates and give them the tools to grow not only in their careers, but also in their personal and spiritual lives. We want every student to have the skills and the confidence to reach their goals and to give glory to God. This year, we are planning to dig deeper and spark change in our communities through service projects, alternative chapels, and events that will teach real life skills.

At Northwestern, women have a growing opportunity to practice Godly leadership and engage in culture change. Our community has amazing examples of women leaders flourishing in areas of business, ministry, the arts, academics, and administration and they provide inspiration and guidance for the future generations.

Sharing Stories

An upcoming blog series will feature interviews with prominent women in the UNW faculty, staff, and alumni body. You will hear advice from Christian leaders about professional, personal, and spiritual development, and, how we can support and encourage each other to be the best we can be and live a life that honors God. I have learned so much from my interviews with these teachers, managers, entrepreneurs, and more, so I encourage both men and women to read these upcoming blog posts.