The Consortium is an annual event conducted during the summer that strives to empower women to be leaders through education and teamwork. It culminates in an opportunity for participants to apply for grant money for leadership programs at their home universities.
During this academic year, students from Bloomsburg University, who attended the institute last summer, proposed a plan to host an on-campus event to raise awareness about dating violence prevention. They submitted their plan and received grant money to conduct a three-day event, ending in a question and answer panel. Many students at BU participated.
All students who attend the leadership institute have the chance to work with their fellow student ambassadors or alone to conceptualize, propose and host similar programs.
The leadership institute serves as a guide for participants as they learn about gender equality issues and ways to communicate with and lead their peers in social change. In the past, this involved screening movies, assigning readings, holding group discussions and having guest speakers come to the institute.
Last year, students had a chance to give back to the McKeever Environmental Center, which hosts the annual conference. Participants completed a service project that involved widening and re-mulching hiking trails for a memorial celebration honoring one of the center’s donors. McKeever Environmental Center is located in Sandy Lake, Pennsylvania, about 30 miles from the Ohio border, and serves students and groups from throughout the commonwealth and beyond.
This year, the leadership institute runs from June 6-10. Students are expected to provide their own transportation, though in years past, participants have worked together to carpool.
Any returning student is eligible to apply for one of the three scholarships offered. The deadline for applications is April 15. Preference will be given to students who demonstrate strong academic achievement, leadership skills and an interest in women’s issues.
The application consists of some basic information and a series of questions based upon which students will be selected to receive a scholarship and attend the conference.
For more information, students can contact Professor Holle Canatella via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 570-484-2178 or can stop by her office, 201 Raub Hall.
All photos courtesy of 2014 PASSHE Women’s Consortium Undergraduate Women’s Leadership Facebook page. The backs of the blue shirts are last summer’s t-shirts (summer 2014 institute) and the back says “Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” – Maya Angelou. The back of the red shirt in one picture is the t-shirt from the 2013 institute.