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#ShinyCampus: How Empowered Women Can Empower Women.

The schedule at the National Conference for College Women Student Leaders was wild. Not a second was wasted. In addition to inspirational speeches and mingling (which I’ve talked about in this entry), there were several workshops and panels to attend.

Before my group and I went to DC, one of the women organizing our travel details advised us to read about the workshops ahead of time and pick a priority and second-choice. Some workshops tend to fill up quickly and considering how big University of Maryland is, you want to know where you’re going. The subjects that these workshops focused on were leadership development, professional development, activism, women’s issues, or identity and diversity.

I’m happy to share my notes from the workshops and panels I attended, because I learned so much within such a short period of time. It was pretty intense and exciting talking about topics such as shine theory and time management with other women and actively listening, and then moving on from one event to the next. Hopefully you’ll find a few good tips that will help you in your day-to-day. If you got any questions, please email me! (blueannajo@aol.com)


#ShinyCampus: How Empowered Women Can Empower Women

Presenters: Erica Wallace, Coordinator for Peer Mentoring and Engagement at University of North Carolina, and Rachel Kline, Residence Director at Syracuse University

Shine Theory – term by Ann Friedman: “When you meet a woman who is intimidatingly witty, stylish, beautiful, and professionally accomplished, befriend her. Surrounding yourself with the best people doesn’t make you look worse by comparison, it makes you look better.”

Examples: Call Your Girlfriend, Women of the Obama Administration, The Final Five, Hidden Figures, etc.

Competition and your circle of friends: “If you find that you are feeling… toxic or competitive toward the women who are supposed to be your closest friends, look at the why and figure out how to fix it.”

Unpack the WHY: The perceived limited resource and why?// Your shine// Their shine// How can you learn from them or use their shine?

Amplification – repeat another woman’s idea (give her credit)

Simone Biles – Aly/silver: Media pitting women against each other

  • “we’re proud of each other”
  • “Her accomplishments don’t diminish mine”

Power in sticking together

  • “Hidden Figures”
    • Recommend a friend


  • Hard-wired to protect their own bodies (passive-aggressive)
  • Social exclusion: remove oneself from other women; make themselves look better (to men)
    • Noam Shpancer (internalized male gaze)
  • Karl Marx – internal self-conscious/perspective
    • The patriarchy/male-dominated society (enemy)
  • Roxane Gay – female friendships – designed to slow us down

Push women to do better and be better

  • Don’t compares their shine to your shine
  • Don’t tear women down
  • Criticism versus hate
    • Nepotism
    • Merge pockets of activism

So Let’s Glow: “Want nothing but the best for your friends because when your friends are happy and successful, it’s probably going to be easier for you to be happy. If you and your friend(s) are in the same field and you can collaborate or help each other, do this without shame. It’s not your fault your friends are awesome. Men invented nepotism and practically live by it. It’s okay for women to do the same.” – Roxane Gay


Dream Big: Moving from Idea to Execution 

Presenter: Andrena Sawyer, Founder/CEO of P.E.R.K. Consulting, LLC




3-4% CEOs are women (biz insider)


  • Work twice as hard
  • Look good
  • Be extra nice
  • Prove yourself
  • Prove intellect
    • Women work more on this!

Your story, your challenges, your idea

Know how an execution (there’s a gap)

  1. Vision casting
  2. Goal setting
  3. Starting off the right way
  • Share your ideas with other people who will help you make it a reality
    • Clearly communicate the idea
    • Communicate often
    • Cascading goals
    • Be open to suggestions
  • Register business (legal)
  • Mentor, accountability, partner
    • Boys’ club – decisions on the golf course or at the bar, not the board room
    • Be vulnerable and transparents

A goal is not an idea

Set the Goal


Stepping stones

Assessment and evaluation

Don’t wait till the end


Reach the Goal!


  • Strategic plan
    • Product or goal
    • Higher ROI
    • Simplify decision making
    • Drive alignment
    • Communicate message
    • Create SMART goals
      • Specific
      • Measurable
      • Attainable
      • Realistic
      • Timely


  • Figure out time
  • Calculate investment
  • Where do I start?
  • What is my mission statement?
    • Why do we exist?

SWOT Analysis (Strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats)

  • Where are we now?
  • Long-term strategic objectives
  • Short-term goals
    • Smart
    • Action plan
  • Vision statement

ABCs/Strategic Plan

  • Assessment
  • Baseline
  • Components
  • Down to specifics
  • Evaluate

Meet the needs as a leader:

Internal Environmental Assessment

  • Organize assets and resources
  • Culture
  • Partnerships
  • Supplies

External Environment Assessment

  • Marketplace
  • Competitors
  • Social trends
  • Regulatory environment

Don’t go power mad or idea crazy

Resistant to change? No structure?

“temperature of the place” (vibe)

Informed decisions:

  • Outside factors
  • Know what you’re talking about
  • Trust

Mission statement: expression of purpose and action

Vision statement: statement of organization’s future

  • How, what and why?

Value statement/guiding principles: core values and beliefs

KPI – performance measures

  • Objective, quantifiable methods for measuring success
    • Performance measurement
    • Initiatives
    • Projects
    • Action plans
  • Financing, operations, capacity, customer

Keep your eye on the vision



Time Management, Time Out

Time Management, Time Out

Presenters: Libby Thorson, Coordinator in the Violence Prevention and Healthy Masculinity Programs at West Chester University, and Jackie Aliotta, Assistant Director of Student Leadership and Involvement at West Chester University

Split up your time into three categories: Self, Obligations and Relationships

Intentional time-out (effort) (self-care)

Most people try to accomplish everything at once!

the 80-20 rule (number of things needed to be done):

  • 20% you have to do
  • 3 goals for the day (or just one!)
  • It’s OK if you don’t finish everything

Time management:

People think of…

  • Stress
  • To-do list
  • Structure
  • Planner/tools/chart
  • Organization
  • Procrastinating
  • Never enough
  • 80-20 rule
  • Incentives
  • Realistic
  • Me time
  • Info overload
  • Deadlines
  • Social media
  • Guilt
  • Brainstorming
  • Balance

Who teaches us time management?

  • Parents
  • College (self)
  • Trial and error
  • Mentor
  • Work
  • Friends
  • Internet
  • Books
  • Successful folks

Thoughts on time management:

  • To-do lists can be fun
  • Prioritize – focus
  • You can’t do everything
  • Be prepared

Motto to live by:

Early is on time. One time is late. Late is unacceptable.

Time management includes:

  • Planning
  • Sleep
  • No stress
  • Present in the moment (future planned)
  • Think of your time and your resources
  • Things hard to remember
  • Frustration

Time is the only thing we got to give.

Obligations and self?

  • Prep ahead mentally
  • Find time afterwards
  • Do something for yourself
  • Recognize your accomplishments

Obligations differ according to…

  • Gender?
  • Generation (yes)
  • First time college students (yes)

Ask yourself…

  • Where are your obligations?
  • What do you want to spend more time on?
  • What prohibits you?

Finance: start saving early

  • Take investments into your own hands
  • Roth IRA

How do we use time to be successful?

Invest in yourself


(Panel) Self-Care to Recharge Your Leadership

Presenters: Jackie Pearce Garrett, Founding Partner of HGVenture LLP, and Tricia Homer, Executive Communication Coach

Questions they asked; options were “I agree” and “I disagree”

  • Self-care is important
  • I know my strategies
  • I spend enough time on self-care

Self-care isn’t luxury… it’s something different for everyone

Redefine self-care

  • You don’t have to spend money to do it

When looking out for others, ask a question to get people to open up

  • Dialogical approach
  • “How are you doing? Are you getting enough sleep?” (etc.)

Know yourself:

  • Self-awareness and reflection
    • Physical
    • Emotional
    • Intellectual
    • Social
    • Spiritual


  • Figure out what works for you
  • Nourishment
  • Vibe, energy
  • Resources

Support and sustain:

  • Building resilience, community

Women are trained to put themselves last

Self-care is an act of resistance

Set boundaries for yourself

Say no

Brush it off if people call you “lazy” for taking a break

About self-care…

Generation, culture change

“we worked hard, so can you!”


What can you change in the next three days? What do you want to do?

In the next three weeks?

In the next three months?

Website: bit.ly/HGVselfcare


(Panel) Diversity and Inclusion: It’s What YOU Make It!

Presented by the United States Air Force: Lieutenant Colonel Angela Cummins, USAFR; Chief Master Sergeant Janna Dorvil, USAF; and Enjoli Ramsey, USAF.

Your own definition of success is continual

Don’t alter yourself

  • Acceptance
  • Conversation with yourself
  • Relationship with yourself
  • Check yourself
    • Thoughts

Don’t get caught up with petty stuff

  • Relationships are vital

Be adventurous!

Don’t burn bridges

  • Network
  • Be civil

I won’t dare telling you how to love. Find your own definition of love. – Dorvil

Be curious about each other

Be open and open-minded

There’s so much to learn from each other

Your job can have an effect on people:

Not every job is going to be on top of the spear. If you’re given the opportunity to sweep the floor, make it the best swept floor you’ve ever done. – Robinson

  • find Dream #2

You have to be comfortable with yourself, and know what your purpose is

People will put adjectives on you based on their bias. – Dorvil

[Note added after the fact: QUOTE from Jessica Jones: “When you burn a bridge, you have to learn how to swim. Or fly!”]