Girl Up hosts fifth annual International Women’s Day Seminar

Eight speakers share personal journeys in fields from healthcare to business



Gastroenterologist Dr. Tara Troy discusses her career path and the successful creation of her own practice on March 8 in the McGee Theater

On Mar. 8, Girl Up hosted the fifth annual International Women’s Day Seminar, where acclaimed speakers from across the community came to inspire female empowerment. 

Each period there was a different speaker, and teachers were encouraged to bring their classes to the seminars. Students could also attend during their free periods. 

Raheela Anwar shared what it was like to be a female entrepreneur in a male-dominated field. She explained how networking can boost your credibility, and how women are less likely to network with other people.

Students had the opportunity to hear the experiences of women from many fields and “show the strides women are making in those fields,” said Girl Up sponsor Jessica Malamuth. 

Eileen Murphy, the CEO and Founder of ThinkCERCA, spoke about her company that makes courseware for elementary through high school students to help develop critical thinking skills.

Murphy emphasized the importance of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, which we are in right now, and the role everybody should play. 

“Whatever we build today will have exponentially faster and greater impacts than anything that was built during any one of the previous revolutions. It’s really important to have a diverse group of creators at the table,” said Murphy. 

Throughout the presentation, Murphy used the phrase “Lift While You Climb” to explain that as you move up in your career, take others with you. That way, everyone has an opportunity to succeed.  

Social Studies teacher and softball coach Rose Wysocki discussed the history of women in sports. She emphasized that escaping sports is impossible since it’s a large part of our culture. 

In her presentation, Wysocki said that the game changer for women in sports was the creation of Title IX in 1972 which ensured that everyone had equal access to opportunities, scholarships, and other benefits. 

Wysocki wanted her audience to look through an historical lens because, unlike personal stories, you are able to see many points of view. 

Sophomore Skye Warner went to see the President and CEO of Group 360, Raheela Anwar, with her class. Group 360 is a concluding firm that advises on career transitions. Warner thought the presentation was enlightening. 

Anwar shared what it was like to be a female entrepreneur in a male-dominated field. She explained how networking can boost your credibility, and how women are less likely to network with other people. 

At the end of the presentation, Anwar said that if anyone made a LinkedIn account, she would network with them through the online platform, according to Warner. 

Senior Caroline Warren, a co-head of Girl Up, said that friends and classmates found the speakers to be “really interesting” as they were able to learn about careers they were curious about. 

Outside the McGee Theater club members sold t-shirts. 

As an international organization created by the United Nations Foundation, Girl Up supports the education, health, and safety of adolescent girls through fundraising. 

As of Mar. 14, nearly $2000 has been raised from the t-shirt sale. All the money will be donated to SchoolCycle.  

“SchoolCycle provides bikes to girls in Uganda, so they can get to school because a lot of times…walking to school can often be not only long but also really dangerous,” said senior Caroline Bachman, a co-head of Girl Up.

When people hear that the money is being donated to SchoolCycle, they are “motivated” to buy t-shirts, according to Malamuth. 

Principal Denise Dubravec said the day is an important experience for students to learn about some of the work key women have done. 

 “It’s wonderful that students are involved in providing these types of opportunities for our school to have these experiences,” she said.