The WILD (Women In Leadership Development) Program is a STEM leadership course developed by women, for women. It will provide 20 Victorian women with the necessary qualifications, skills and confidence to achieve career momentum and attain senior leadership roles, particularly company directorships .Australia, with a project team comprising STEM professionals across Victoria.
As at April 2018, the percentage of women on ASX 200 boards was 27.5%. While this has grown significantly in recent years (from 8.3% in 2009), we still have some way to go.
There are many recognised barriers to attracting women to leadership positions, particularly in the STEM sector. Lack of mentors, cost of qualifications, family commitments and unconscious bias are some of the factors making it difficult for women to attract and retain leadership positions.
While some of these factors will require a long-term cultural change, the WILD Program seeks to remove lack of mentors and cost of qualifications as barriers to success.
Our participants will be female professionals in the STEM sector who have postgraduate qualifications and a minimum three years commercial experience. The Program will initially begin as a Victorian initiative, but as interests builds and we gain support from local and interstate partners, we plan to expand the program to a national level.
The WILD Program comprises three distinct components that will better position women to attain competitive senior STEM positions and forge successful careers, in turn inspiring the next generation of female leaders. PART 1: Company Director’s course To help get more women on both for-profit and not-forprofits STEM boards, successful applicants will undertake the prestigious Company Directors Course run by the Australian Institute of Company Directors. PART 2: Leadership skills retreat There are many skills not necessarily intuitive or taught on the job, such as negotiation and emotional intelligence, that can greatly assist women in obtaining and performing well in senior leadership roles. These will be covered in a professionally facilitated two-day retreat. PART 3: Mentorship and real-world experience Participants will be partnered with a mentor in the STEM sector, who will be available for advice and guidance during and potentially after the program.
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