WLF ‘13 Inspires Next Generation of Female STEM Professionals

For the past few months you heard us tweeting, blogging, and Facebooking about The Successful You: 2013 Women’s Leadership Forum. We eagerly encouraged you to register and bring all of your friends. Now registration is complete, and the forum is over – but certainly it’s not to be forgotten quite yet!

Georgia Papathomas
Georgia Papathomas’s opening keynote Photo Credit: Dana J. Quigley

Fortified with a group of memorable speakers, the Women’s Leadership Forum, held last Thursday at the NERD Center, was inspiring and intriguing – just ask any of the women who tweeted about the keynotes, panels, and workshops.  @JessaBrez deemed Diane Ripstein’s communications presentation one of the most helpful talks she’s ever attended, and @perrinmcc shared her sentiment, raving that Ripstein “crushed it!”

Girl Scouts of Eastern Mass
Girl Scouts of Easter Mass pose for a picture during the forum

But these reviews should come as no surprise. You can’t motivate the next generation of female STEM professionals without top-notch speakers with real life experience! The attendees, both new to STEM and seasoned professionals, appreciated the advice and perspective offered throughout the day. In particular, the thirty high school girls from Girl Scouts of Eastern Mass and Science Club for Girls who were in attendance saw firsthand what their futures could hold (all proceeds from the event also went to both of these organizations). It’s hard not to feel inspired after listening to the likes of Georgia Papathomas (Johnson & Johnson), Diane Ripstein (Diane Ripstein Consulting), and Robin Chase (Buzzcar). Just search #WLF13 on Twitter to read the dozens of messages of inspiration and motivation.

Women's Leadership Forum
Morning session with Tish Scolnik, Jules, Pieri, and Daphne Zohar
Photo Credit: Dana J. Quigley

Speaking of these women, they each brought something different but equally important to the forum. Robin Chase’s closing keynote was certainly entertaining, as she detailed the crazy pilot program that eventually became Zipcar and reminded everyone to do their part in reducing carbon emissions (always important!). Ripstein, as always, provided actionable but practical steps for better communication. Papathomas shared her executive perspective and exemplified her own role to encourage other women to continue down the path to success. And these were only some of the speakers!

Overall, the day was a great success and filled with “tons of creative women with hustle,” as @katedevil puts it. But there is still work to be done. Spread the word and encourage even more women to take part in next year’s forum so we can build the female STEM community and promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace!

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