It’s a great day to be a woman! Melinda Garvey here as your voice, with the mission to give women everywhere a place to be heard and tell their stories. We’d love to hear from you!
FIRST THOUGHT: Paying It Forward
When I first watched The Devil Wears Prada, I thought, hmm, so this is what it’s like to be a powerful woman: You’re a bit loathsome, but you look fabulous. But now, I see that it’s possible to be a bread-winning gal with a heart of gold, all while dressing to the nines.
If we can see more women who are powerful with a touch of thoughtfulness, maybe we can adopt those qualities. Then the next generation will emulate our kindness and so on. Today, try it on for size and do one kind thing for someone else.
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 9
I’m getting a little tired of seeing yet another male curmudgeon who is in charge of such and such. If you think every time you turn on the news or C-SPAN (Just kidding. Does anyone watch that channel?), you only spot dudes, you’re probably right.
Women just aren’t at the top, plain and simple. Out of 190 heads of state, nine are women. Of all the people in parliament in the whole wide world, 13 percent are women.
Politics affect more than laws; they affect how businesses are run: Only about 15 or 16 percent of C-level jobs and board seats in the corporate sector are held by women.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Edie Fraser, CEO of STEMconnector and Million Woman Mentors
Edie Fraser first faced prejudice while studying at Duke University. She wanted to join a sorority, but the sorority’s charter forbade the admittance of Jewish women. Fraser used that moment to climb the ladder to become the icon she is today.
She’s created several successful companies and organizations, and has been the CEO of STEMconnector for the past four years. STEMconnector, a resource for all things related to science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, launched an initiative in January 2014, called Million Women Mentors, to address a growing concern of women in STEM.
Only 24 percent of STEM workers are female, and 74 percent are white, and those that do work in STEM make less than men. While many women study STEM in college, many don’t continue in the field after graduating.
Fraser saw an opportunity to address this problem. Mentorship proved to be a valuable catalyst to getting female students to use their STEM education to land STEM jobs.
Million Women Mentors has reached 30 million girls and women by engaging mentors, both male and female, to increase students’ interest in STEM programs.
The Profiles in Diversity Journal named Fraser one of it Top 50 Pioneers in Diversity, alongside the likes of Oprah Winfrey and Bill Clinton. And that’s one of 45 major leadership awards Fraser has been honored with for her work on diversity, STEM, entrepreneurship and philanthropy!
She seems to have done it all, but she’s not finished yet. The fight to equality in STEM has just begun, but there’s a glimmer of hope with Fraser’s sage leadership.
QUITE THE QUOTE
Think about how you can affect change in the communities you care about, and take Estee Lauder’s advice to heart:
“I never dreamed about success; I worked for it.”
That’s all for now. Be sure to share this so more women can have a voice! Thanks for getting ready with us.