Kathleen Brush Women in Leadership Program

Women hold 52% of all the professional jobs in the U.S., yet only 5% of CEOs are women. The Kathleen Brush Women in Leadership Program is a strategic initiative designed to level this ratio by giving participants an opportunity to secure a leadership competitive advantage. The program does this by: addressing subjects known to hold women back, leveraging soft skills where women have been shown to have an inherent advantage, exploring subjects that are key to a leader’s success in the 21st century, and including the indispensable support of networks and mentors.

Program Objectives

The Kathleen Brush Women in Leadership program is an intensive 12-session course that will provide high potential individuals with the skills necessary to succeed in executive management positions. The program will run every third Wednesday from September 5, 2018 through April 24, 2019. The Kathleen Brush Women in Leadership Program is designed specifically for highly driven individuals whose goal is to attain executive leadership roles within their organization.

Led by successful business experts, experienced faculty and leadership coaches, this course will employ active learning techniques including case studies and simulations, collaborative tasks, lectures, readings, and participant presentations. All participants will be matched with a C-Suite level mentor and will also be required to become a mentor to an up-and-coming achiever. Extensive networking opportunities and public speaking are a highlight of the program.

Program Focus

  • Female-specific topics. This course explores issues that are truly limiting promotions for women and how to overcome those hurdles; including succeeding at multiple roles at home and at work.
  • Forward-thinking Global skills. Participants are taught how to decipher global opportunities and threats, and how to leverage diversity and technology to achieve superior outcomes.
  • Merging hard skills and soft skills. The program teaches participants how to leverage natural abilities to deliver superior strategies and bottom line results.
  • Theory to Practice. Participants are continually challenged to apply their new-found knowledge to real life situations.
  • Networking. The course teaches effective networking skills, and enables building a cohort network-for-life.
  • Mentoring: Participants are given access to accomplished mentors, and they will also be taught how to leverage mentors and how to be a mentor.

Instructional Schedule*

Sept. 5 Global and Historical Perspective: Dr. Kathleen Brush

In this session, participants will recognize that the 'elephant in the room' is that the patriarchy still exists. Even decades after the civil rights and feminist movements, women are not equally represented in positions of power. Participants will gain an understanding of the history of women in leadership roles in a global context, how to succeed within existing second generation bias, and how to speed up the pace of change to achieve gender parity in senior leadership positions.

Sept. 26 Mentoring & IDP: Rebekah Dickinson, Alexa Sherr Hartley, J.D. & Dr. Ethlyn Williams

Having a mentor gives you a sounding board for ideas for major decisions and gives you access to your mentor's knowledge and experience. We will explore the importance of not only having a mentor, but also of functioning as a mentor for the next generation. The mentorship component of this program will be discussed in detail. All participants will be matched with C-Suite level mentors and will also be required to mentor a next generation leader.

In the afternoon session, participants will build a personal and professional roadmap that will encompass both your desired destination and the steps, experience, and development you will need to make progress on the journey. A roadmap gives you a sense of direction, a way to assess career progress, and career goals and milestones. The roadmap will be an ongoing project throughout the course and will require out-of-class work.

Oct. 17 Leadership and Ethics: Nancy Proffitt

Leadership is less about your needs, and more about the needs of the people and the organization you are leading. Leadership styles are not something to be tried on like so many suits, to see which fits. Rather, they should be adapted to the particular demands of the situation, the particular requirements of the people involved and the particular challenges facing the organization. In this session, you will come to understand your leadership styles and how to best leverage for any given situation.

Nov. 7 Strategy and Innovation: Dr. Steve Smith & Nina Segura

Business strategy is a commitment to a set of coherent, mutually reinforcing policies aimed at attaining a specific goal. Great strategies promote alignment among various groups within an organization; clarify objectives and priorities, and help focus efforts around them. Many leaders fail to incorporate innovation into business strategy and planning. This session will focus on the importance of innovation and including planning into overall strategy.

Nov. 28 Economic Literacy: Dr. Monica Escaleras & Dr. Ting Levy

Economic literacy gives leaders a better foundation from which to make decisions that will affect them as consumers, workers, producers, investors, and as citizens. Economic literacy also provides the tools for understanding one’s economic world and how to interpret events that will either directly or indirectly affect oneself and one’s businesses. This session will cover both macro and micro economics in order for participants to understand how outside pressures will affect business decisions and leadership challenges.

Dec. 19 Accounting & Finance: Dr. Joel Dicicco, Dr. Lotus Seely, Dr. Sofia Johan, CFO Panelists

Both accounting and finance play a significant role at the core of every organization.  Across public and private sectors alike, it is impossible to operate without knowledgeable and highly-skilled accounting and finance professionals. This session will explore core concepts that all leaders must understand for key decision-making within their organizations.

Jan. 9 Problem Solving: Dr. Mehran Basiratmand

Business leaders often rely on their experience and instinct to make tough decisions. However, more than ever, it is becoming necessary to know what the numbers say. Quantitative methods provide solid evidence to guide management decisions on production, distribution, marketing and personnel management. These methods also help managers project future business conditions, enabling them to adjust their strategies as needed. Additionally, a look at Management Information Systems will help participants better understand how business can use data to improve the company's operations.

Jan. 30 Entrepreneurship: Dr. Kevin Cox/ Entrepreneurs Panel

The entrepreneurial spirit is important whether you want to start your own business, or simply take your business unit to the next level. This session will encourage participants to be entrepreneurial leaders that find sustainable solutions to economic and social problems. The afternoon session will include a panel of successful female entrepreneurs who will share some of their pitfalls and how they were able to overcome obstacles to achieve success. 

Feb. 20 Communication: Dr. Emily Sacks

Good communication means the intended message is received by the audience without any distortions in meaning. Good communicators are generally superior employees and leaders because their teams understand the task at hand, and get the job done on time and on budget. This session will focus on oral communication; from one-on-one conversations to small group settings or presentations in front of a large audience. Participants will learn how to deliver bad news, resolve conflict and tools to propel themselves forward.

March 13 Courage: Speakers Karen Pfeffer & Connie Phelan

Under-representation of women in senior leadership positions is related to the subtle, often self-imposed barriers of fear and risk-aversion. Organizations with few women in senior positions are inadvertently sending the message that being female is a leadership liability and thereby discourage their own up-and-coming female leaders. In this session, participants will learn where their fears come from, and to replace fears with courage in order to break the glass ceiling. This session is highly experiential including an optional walk over broken glass to represent someone who has broken through the glass ceiling and championed her goals.

April 3 Leading through Change & Innovation: Speaker Nancy Proffitt

When your organization is experiencing times of change and you are in a position where you have to lead, you must stay purpose driven and persist until you succeed. Communication, both from a technical standpoint, and to reinforce needed inspiration, is key. This session will explore change in the workplace and best practices for dealing with it.

April 24 Participation & Activism (Speaker Pending) /Wrap up & Graduation

Leadership at its core is about participation and activism. Those who sit on the sidelines will never lead. This session will cover the importance of participation at the foundational levels, such as on workplace teams or committees, all the way to leadership on boards or directors or as elected officials. The afternoon will wrap up with participants’ Individual Development Plan presentations.

Kathleen Brush Women in Leadership Program

Program Details

  • Format: Every third Wednesday
  • Dates: Sept. 5, Sept. 26, Oct. 17, Nov. 7, Nov. 28, Dec. 19, Jan. 9, Jan. 30, Feb. 20, Mar. 13, April 3, April 24
  • Time: 8:30am – 4:30pm
  • Hours: 84 Hours – PDUs / 8.4 CEUs
  • Sessions: 12
  • Location: Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton Campus
  • Fee: $4,750 – Includes materials, lunch and parking. Partial scholarships are available. For more information, contact Paige Garrido at pgarrido@fau.edu.

Contact Us

Paige Garrido
Program Coordinator

phone: (561) 297-4819
email: pgarrido@fau.edu
map: BU 86 203

© Last Updated8/6/18