fbpx

Women's Empowerment Conference 2022

 

 

 

Join us from May 24 – 27 at our week-long virtual conference that will address the challenges women face in the field of Entrepreneurship, Finance, and STEM. During this conference we will be bringing in experienced women in each of these fields to provide you with tools, resources and advice on how to take action when experiencing or witnessing inequalities and lack of empowerment that female -identifying individuals may or have faced in the workplace.

Kick-Off Panel

november, 2022

Four incredible women share their stories, successes, hardships, and how their resilience helped them persevere in their field.

Crystal Witter

Crystal Witter

BA'20

Crystal is a Jamaican national. She is passionate about youth development, women empowerment, and equity. She is a transformational leader with over ten years of experience fostering consensus and capacity.
Crystal currently serves as the Vice President of Operations, leading the day-to-day operations of Crayon Strategies Inc. In this role, she is also instrumental in driving the company’s business development processes. Formerly, Crystal held project management positions with Saint Mary’s University Entrepreneurship Center (SMUEC). Crystal graduated as Valedictorian from Saint Mary’s University with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology in 2021. During her time at SMU, she served as the board chair of SMUSA’s Board of directors and represented various societies internationally; she participated in Peaceful Schools international, facilitating peace education workshops in Belfast, Northern Ireland and was a delegate at the Model United Nations conference in New York. She is the founder of Ilash Icon HFX and Co-Founder of Chrystal Treasure Herbarium. Crystal is very active in the community, serving as the Shero Anti-Trafficking League founder and a board member of the Open Harbour Refugee Association.

 

Keisha Turner

Keisha Turner

BA'12

As a successful varsity volleyball athlete during her time at Saint Mary’s University, being known as Canada’s most notable yoga coach wasn’t originally a title that was on Keisha Turner’s radar. Although Keisha had been doing yoga since the age of 16, it wasn’t until she became a student athlete that she truly understood the physical and mental benefits it could have in all aspects of her life. After introducing traditional yoga into her regular training routine, Keisha was determined to share her positive experience with other athletes who are committed to succeed. With this, ATHLETICYOGIS was born. Known as Canada’s leader in modern athletic yoga mobility training, ATHLETICYOGIS offers unique yoga mobility programs (specific to individual sport) for elite and professional athletes.

Dr. Rohini Bannerjee

Dr. Rohini Bannerjee

Dr. Rohini Bannerjee, daughter of immigrants from Himachal Pradesh, India, was born and raised on unceded Mikmaki territory, on the Dartmouth side of the great harbour or Kjipuktuk. Rohini is Associate Vice-President, Diversity Excellence and an Associate Professor of French and Francophone Studies in the Department of Languages and Cultures at Saint Mary’s University. Her primary research focuses on the literatures and cultures of the Francophone Indian Ocean.
Rohini is the author of short stories and poetry, in both French and in English, appearing in Canada, India and Spain. Rohini is on the EDI Advisory Committee for Universities Canada, is a member of the Board of Directors for Adsum House for Women and Children and serves as a volunteer writing facilitator with the Immigrant and Migrant Women’s Association of Halifax.
Dr. Patricia Bradshaw

Dr. Patricia Bradshaw

Dr. Pat Bradshaw completed her term as Dean of the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University in May of 2018 and is currently a Professor of Management at the University.  Before joining Saint Mary’s University Pat was an Organizational Behaviour Professor at the Schulich School of Business, York University. Her research interests included governance of nonprofit organizations, change management and organizational power and politics from a feminist and social justice lens. Pat enjoys her volunteer work and has been on the boards of organizations such as Feed Nova Scotia, the Atlantic Provinces Economic Council as well as being Chair of the Board of the Community Sector Council of Nova Scotia. She is also active as a consultant and facilitator in the areas of women’s leadership, strategic planning, and nonprofit governance.

Women in STEM

november, 2022

Day two of the WEC 2022 brings a workshop open to all. For this workshop you will spend an hour learning from our experienced speaker and walk away with tools and resources to address challenges women face in the field of STEM.

Mel Holmes

Mel Holmes

Mel Graduated Dalhousie University in 2008 with a Bachelors in Chemical Engineering. She immediately headed West to work the oil rigs, and after 2 years of northern Alberta winters realized that was not the path for her. She returned to Dalhousie and completed a Masters in Materials Engineering in 2012. Subsequently, Mel travelled nationwide on behalf of Wajax Equipment, exploring open pit and underground mining operations. Her experience with heavy equipment led her to join Canadian Nuclear Laboratories, working on a Government-led masterplan initiative to build new nuclear research facilities in Chalk River.
Mel soon found herself with an exciting opportunity move to Reno, Nevada to work at Tesla’s first Gigafactory. Ultimately being the sole design manager for the full 1.9M SF facility, Mel also launched Tesla’s first internal battery production line as well as Tesla’s first battery recycling facility – the project she is most proud of.
Since Tesla, Mel has worked on the Apple iPad CapEx team, coordinating all equipment acquisitions and installation for global iPad build locations.
Today, Mel is thrilled to be back in the electrical vehicle world with Rivian automotive, based out of Normal, Illinois. She is currently working on production ramping at the existing factory in Normal, as well as exciting new cell development projects and the upcoming brand new production plant in Georgia.
Mel still lives in Reno with her dog Gracie- they enjoy the unlimited sunshine, getting out to the beautiful Nevada desert and Tahoe beaches as often as they can.

WOMEN IN STEM

Roundtable: 6:30 -7:30 ADT

Following the workshop, we will be hosting a roundtable session that is open to up to ten students. This discussion will be facilitated by an experienced speaker who will guide the conversation and allow you to ask any questions about challenges you have or may face working in the field of STEM as a female identifying individual. The roundtable will not be recorded with the goal of providing a safe space for conversation.

Wren Bruce

Wren Bruce

 

 

Wren Bruce (M.Sc., P.Geo.) is a geologist and currently works as Exploration Manager at Mercator Geological Services, a consulting group based in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia. She contributes great value to clients and their projects providing drilling and database management. Wren has worked in the mineral exploration industry for 10+ years in a variety of commodities (gold, copper, uranium, and kimberlitic deposits) throughout Canada, the United States, and Finland. She hopes to continue working as a field operative. Wren is also dedicated to being a mentor for the next generation of field geologists as well as a support for women in the sciences.

Women in Finance

november, 2022

Day three of the WEC 2022 brings a workshop open to all. For this workshop you will spend an hour learning from our experienced speaker and walk away with tools and resources to address challenges women face in the field of Finance.

Mrugakshee Palwe

Mrugakshee Palwe

Keegan and Mrugakshee opted out of traditional finance and decided to Go Full Crypto in the summer of 2020. Since then, they have been educating, consulting, creating products and services around Bitcoin. Having graduated with a degree in computer science from Acadia University, both founders decided to pursue entrepreneurship in 2018, when they founded their business – Atlantic Blockchain Company. The duo pivoted to Cryptocurrency in 2020, following their decision to convert 95% of their business cash reserves and personal wealth into Bitcoin.

WOMEN IN FINANCE

Roundtable: 6:30 -7:30 ADT

Following the workshop, we will be hosting a roundtable session that is open to up to ten students. This discussion will be facilitated by an experienced speaker who will guide the conversation and allow you to ask any questions about challenges you have or may face working in the field of finance as a female identifying individual. The roundtable will not be recorded with the goal of providing a safe space for conversation.

Dr. Ellen Farrell

Dr. Ellen Farrell

MBA’88

 

Dr. Farrell is a Professor at the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University.  She specializes in venture capital and entrepreneurship and her primary research relates to venture capital and its relationship with entrepreneurial ecosystems.  Her current work focuses on the gender gap in Canada’s venture capital funding. She is the Co-Director of the Master of Technology Entrepreneurship and Innovation, and founded Venture Grade: Student Venture Capital Fund, a $265,000 fund raised and managed by students.  She was awarded the Best Emerging Researcher by the Canadian Council for Small Business and Entrepreneurship.  Dr. Farrell studied at the University of Nottingham in the United Kingdom (one of the Top 100 Universities in the World) where she completed a PhD in venture capital.

Dr Farrell’s background includes private and public corporate work.  She recently lead a six-university scholarly partnership that is investigated the Atlantic Entrepreneurial Ecosystem on behalf of the federal government.  She is an entrepreneur, an investor, and was the only women to have received venture capital under the Province’s former Venture Capital Act.  Her entrepreneurial experience brings a unique perspective to her teaching.

Women in Entrepreneurship

november, 2022

Day four of the WEC 2022 brings a workshop open to all. For this workshop you will spend an hour learning from our experienced speaker and walk away with tools and resources to address challenges women face in the field of Entrepreneurship.

Stefanie Bruinsma

Stefanie Bruinsma

Stefanie Bruinsma is the Founder and CEO of AutoCate, an on-line, on-call automotive repair support service developed for women, by women to ensure they are confident, informed, and competent car owners. She has a lengthy and unique history within the automotive industry, becoming a licensed Automotive Technician in 2007 and building upon this with a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Waterloo in 2015. Stefanie was the engineering lead for the Green and Intelligent Automotive (GAIA) Facility at UWaterloo, a $10M state-of-the-art engineering facility specialized for research of hybrid and electric vehicles. She has accumulated over 20 years of experience throughout all levels of the automotive industry.

Stefanie demonstrated her lifelong love of learning and constant drive to expand her knowledge base by obtaining her Master of Business, Entrepreneurship, and Technology (MBET) degree at UWaterloo in 2021. She is also a Concept $5k, Problem Pitch, and APEX competition winner, whilst developing her company: AutoCate. AutoCate was incorporated in 2021, it has developed and evaluated its MVP. In May 2022 AutoCate hired its first two, non-founder full-time employees (co-op) and is actively working to execute its next beta in June 2022.

WOMEN IN ENTREPRENEURSHIP

Roundtable: 2:00 – 3:00 pm ADT

Following the workshop, we will be hosting a roundtable session that is open to up to ten students. This discussion will be facilitated by an experienced speaker who will guide the conversation and allow you to ask any questions about challenges you have or may face working in the field of Entrepreneurship as a female identifying individual. The roundtable will not be recorded with the goal of providing a safe space for conversation.

Keisha Turner

Keisha Turner

BA’12

 

 

As a successful varsity volleyball athlete during her time at Saint Mary’s University, being known as Canada’s most notable yoga coach wasn’t originally a title that was on Keisha Turner’s radar.
Although Keisha had been doing yoga since the age of 16, it wasn’t until she became a student athlete that she truly understood the physical and mental benefits it could have in all aspects of her life.
After introducing traditional yoga into her regular training routine, Keisha was determined to share her positive experience with other athletes who are committed to succeed. With this, ATHLETICYOGIS was born. Known as Canada’s leader in modern athletic yoga mobility training, ATHLETICYOGIS offers unique yoga mobility programs (specific to individual sport) for elite and professional athletes.

THANK YOU TO OUR SPONSORS

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This
X