Through a scholarship from the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia, Ms. Fatima Jennae Jereza, Assistant Director of the Ateneo Internationalization for Mindanao Office, was able to complete an online leadership course for emerging women leaders from higher education institutions in Asia. The program ran from 6 March 2023 to 16 March 2023. It was initiated and developed by Ewha Institute for Leadership Development (EILD), and sponsored by Scranton Women’s Leadership Center in Korea, the United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia, and Wesley Foundation in Japan.
The WoLA 2023 course focused on promoting feminist leadership for women in Asia, and was intended to advance their academic careers and flourish in the post-COVID-19 era by upholding adaptability and expanding global vision. WoLA provided an invaluable opportunity for women leaders to contribute to the promotion of gender equality, harness their leadership skills and forge a strong network with ambitious peers from various cultural backgrounds. WoLA graduates are, therefore, empowered by feminist perspectives that enable them to make a positive impact in their communities with confidence, visionary leadership, and mutual support.
The program had three modules on 1) Feminist Leadership; 2) Self-Leadership and Vision; and 3) Asian Women Leaders. WoLA was able to feature lectures and testimonies from formidable women leaders from all over Asia, such as Dr. Eunshil Kim, a seasoned professor at Ewha University currently working on her study of global warming in order to inform climate action; Ms. Isabel Paul, an Employee Assistance Professional who is a consultant, coach, and clinical psychologist; Ms. Mekdes Gebrewold, a Strategic Management Advisor to small business and big corporations; Prof. Nirmala Rao, Vice-Chancellor of the Asian University for Women and the previous Deputy Director of the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) of the University of London; Ms. Kathy Matsui, co-founder and General Partners of MPower Partners, Japan’s first ESG-focused venture capital fund; Dr. Heisook Kim, the President of Ewha Womans University, South Korea, herself; and of course, Dr. Kyunghwa Kang, the 38th and the first female Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Korea from 2017-2021.