Supporting Women Administrators in Business Education
- The Women Administrators in Management Education (WAME) Affinity Group recognizes the unique experiences and challenges of female administrators in higher education and supports women in their leadership journeys.
- WAME currently has over 600 members globally and continues to grow; the group is also welcoming of non-women members.
- Specific initiatives like Got Your Back and Pathways to the Boardroom help female administrators build communities of support and leverage their influence to obtain advanced positions in higher education.
Christy Weer: [0:13] The Women Administrators' Affinity Group is a fantastic group of women administrators in higher education who come together to support one another, to advocate for one another, to mentor each other as we navigate higher education. We're a really strong group. We're over 600 members, and we're growing every year.
[0:34] WAME is largely women as the title would show, but certainly, men are welcome to attend our events, absolutely. I think the more that we educate, the better we are. We're certainly an open group and we want to educate. I would say we're certainly open to men engaging, coming to our events, and participating.
We're certainly an open group and we want to educate.
[0:59] WAME works to face the current issues of administrators by being supportive by serving as role models, mentors, and advocating for one another. Advocating for an increase of women administrators in higher education.
[1:17] Working with our female faculty to encourage and support them to become associate deans, deans, provosts, presidents. Certainly, we work to help others and to advocate other females achieve roles in administration.
[1:34] Women Administrators certainly face challenges. One of those challenges is that there isn't enough of us. Building, supporting, mentoring, and networking helps to create more female administrators. Certainly, there's not enough of us.
Building, supporting, mentoring, and networking helps to create more female administrators.
[1:52] In addition to there not being enough of us, we face challenges or we continue to face challenges of work-life balance. Females and women still carry the brunt of home life, so balancing work-life challenges is tough.
[2:08] Oftentimes, because there are fewer female administrators, we're always on. We're always visible. Our voices aren't necessarily as loud and heard because there are fewer of us.
[2:23] Got Your Back is an informal networking opportunity where we are paired into groups of two, three, or four women administrators, who are from similar types of institutions or maybe we're in a similar geographic area. Something in common that we can talk about our challenges and our opportunities, informal things that come our way.
Our voices aren't necessarily as loud and heard because there are fewer of us.
[2:53] Maybe we've got a challenging experience that we're dealing with right now, and we want some different perspectives or maybe just some different ideas, or a shoulder to lean on or to someone to talk to about this situation. It's totally confidential, and we have each other's backs in that.
[3:10] Lynn Richardson, one of our steering committee members and longtime WAME member started this and helped us get this going.
[3:17] Pat Flynn recently did a Zoom session on "Pathways to the Boardroom." She educated us on ways in which we can move and achieve roles on corporate and mutual fund boards, which is really educational.
[3:33] I became involved. I attended a couple of meetings, and then a call was put out for steering committee members. I didn't know very many members of WAME, but I thought, "Well, I'll throw my hat in the ring. No one will probably ever know who I am, but I'll give it a shot."
[3:52] Sure enough, I got a message that I had been selected for membership on the steering committee. That's when I became actively involved. From that, so a year on the steering committee, and then I became chair of the steering committee. I've met so many fabulous people, and it's been just a great experience for me.