Get Inspired at the Leeds Women in Leadership’s ‘Empower Conference’

On Wednesday 20th February, the Leeds Women in Leadership Society will give students across Leeds the opportunity to learn from and network with professionals from a range of fields. Their aptly named ‘Empower Conference’ will let students hear talks from, and engage in workshops with, women in a variety of leadership roles. These include entrepreneurs, professionals in STEM fields, the arts, as well as award winning Radio Producer Kate Coker and TEDx speaker Funmi Abari.

The conference starts at 9:30, and kicks off with a range of speakers followed by a networking lunch in which students and professionals will have the chance to mingle and share ideas with one another. From there, the event offers a range of practice workshops followed by some final speakers and a panel discussion. This packed day gives its attendees ample opportunity to learn and engage in discussion, helping students to empower themselves and set themselves up for a life after university.

“The conference was only started last year when the Women in Leadership Society was founded,” a spokeswoman from the society tells The Gryphon, but already they have tasked themselves with hosting “an annual and all gender inclusive event to help equip students for their future goals and aspirations. It will benefit students as a day filled with practical workshops so they have active opportunities to learn. The networking lunch provides an opportunity to start making connections for when they graduate,” which students are often guilty of underestimating.

If there’s something that universities often, almost universally, fail to do, it’s to provide students with a clear understanding of the importance of networking in any career. This, coupled with a distinct lack of networking opportunities, can leave intelligent and qualified students in the dark on how to progress through their career after university. The ‘Empower Conference’ therefore represents a rare and valuable opportunity for students to learn about the value of networking whilst actually interacting and engaging with professionals.

This conference is the culmination of the hard work of the Leeds Women in Leadership society who highlight on their union page that they strive to “empower students to push beyond what they thought possible irrespective of gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, or any other factor.” As a sign of this inclusivity their membership is free. So, if you’re a student looking to take advantage of your time at university, take a chance on this incredible opportunity and get yourself a ticket to the ‘Empower Conference’ at the university union.

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Matthew Jeffery