3 Women Students Receive a Scholarship from the American Association of University Women (AAUW) to attend a Leadership Conference in May 2020
Earlier this semester, some Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Prescott campus students received an email about an opportunity to apply for a scholarship to attend the National Conference for College Women Student Leaders (NCCWSL) hosted by the American Association of University Women (AAUW), Arizona branch in College Park, Mary. After a brief turnaround from the deadline, three women students at the Embry-Riddle, Prescott campus were selected to receive this scholarship to attend the NCCWSL. This leadership conference will be taking place at the University of Maryland, College Park in May 2020.
When receiving notification of selection for the scholarship, the three students – Alexis Hepburn, Sydni Bond, and Hayley Matthews – were all surprised and excited. They had all decided to jump on the chance to apply because it seemed worthwhile to their future endeavors. Hepburn stated that “it seemed like a great opportunity to represent the outstanding women we have on our campus.” Both Bond and Matthews saw the application as a learning opportunity to take advantage of while it was available.
The conference is anticipated to last three days, taking place at the end of May. Per the conference website, the conference will focus on leadership and professional development, activism, women’s issues, and identity and diversity. The focuses of the conferences were some of the motivating factors for the three students to apply. Matthews is interested in the impact and benefits of the conference, Hepburn mentioned the desire to learn about potential professional development tools, and Bond is intrigued by the information she will learn about activism.
All three students are present on the Embry-Riddle, Prescott campus in various ways. Matthews is a collegiate athlete, playing for our women’s soccer team. She has plans to apply to become a CAM “as well as joining other organisations on our campus that encourage women leadership.” Bond is present within clubs such as the Black Student Union and the Society of Physics Students while holding an off-campus job. Hepburn is in a multitude of leadership roles on the Prescott campus, some of which include being a member of the Honors Program, a CAM for the College of Engineering, and a mentor for the underclassmen in the College of Engineering.
Each woman has their own desires on what they hope to glean from the conference and the experience it will offer. They are hoping to improve their leadership in different ways. Hepburn wants to gain insight that will aid her in improving her mentorship abilities. She considers her mentorship here at Embry-Riddle, Prescott to have been one of the “key factors that contributed to [her] success.” Bond is hoping to learn more about how to better uplift other people and their voices while understanding their struggles in her pursuit of becoming a leader at school and at work. Matthews wishes to gain the confidence she feels is necessary for her to take on more responsibility at Embry-Riddle and consequentially make a difference on campus.
The excitement the students have for the conference is palpable. Through this opportunity, new friendships have been formed and experiences are waiting to be made. As Hepburn wisely mentioned, when opportunities like this come around, “you should always apply.” It’s similar to the philosophy that Bond follows of “if you don’t ask, the answer will always be no;” both statements being strong motivation for anyone to take advantage of opportunities that fall in a person’s path. All of the students are grateful to have been selected to attend the conference and are thankful for the prospects it will offer to them.