To honor the legacy of Endicott College Founder Dr. Eleanor Tupper, while recognizing this institution as a pioneer in women’s education, four first-year students founded Women in LEADership (WIL) in 2014. The following year, the Changemakers Conference signature event was launched to convene and celebrate inspirational business women—while bringing visibility to Endicott’s diverse entrepreneurial community.
Accounting major and club President Abbey Robinson ’21 explains, “The ‘L.E.A.D.’ in the organization’s title stands for ‘lead, empower, aspire, and discover,’ and we are focused on driving a culture of empowerment in pursuing mentors, engaging with industry professionals, and attaining employment.”
Founding Advisor & Assistant Professor of Experiential Learning Cathy Butler cites that bringing best-in-class employers to campus has been a successful initiative of WIL. “Representatives from PWC, Wellington Management, Virtual Inc., and Cause Fund, to name a few, have hired WIL members as interns or full-time employees,” she says. “Relationship building through the Changemakers Conference and other events has a positive impact.”
Like most events in 2020, the Fifth Annual Changemakers Conference went virtual due to COVID-19. However, this change helped reach a wider audience of 200 pre-conference registrants. Participants were fully engaged, producing nearly 500 posts and comment threads, demonstrating a genuine interest in showcasing successful women.
WIL’s future plans include community service like Habitat for Humanity builds, team building activities, and professional development workshops. The Sixth Annual Changemakers Conference is slated for April 2021.