Research in the Journal of College Student Development shows that many women leaders learned their most valued skills by taking on roles in community service projects. It also shows that women who make a difference on college campuses are encouraged by one-on-one relationships with special mentors. And whether they pursue careers in business, education, or public service, they probably first found their voice as campus leaders.
Brevard College's Institute for Women in Leadership (IWIL) fosters growth academically, socially and personally, with specific programs tailored to women who want to make a difference in the world.
Our Mission: IWIL is a residential learning community that fosters confident, inquisitive young women with a passion for local service. Through mentoring and experiential leadership programs, IWIL women develop into Brevard College leaders ready to also serve their communities upon graduation.
IWIL women live together in the same residence hall and share a lounge. The IWIL (We pronounce it "I will!") journey begins with residents decorating their common space and learning the skills necessary to live together and build community. "Living together makes us a tightly knit community, where we actually learn from each other and are more available and open to one another," said Katie Kelleher, from Ocean Springs, Mississippi.
The journey continues in four one-hour courses, where students develop community-oriented projects with the help of a professor. For example, IWIL women interviewed women who have survived a domestic abuse situation; they then worked with a theater professor to turn the transcripts into a play."
"Designing the script for Forget Me Not has provided me with a great deal of opportunities to grow and learn. The interview and transcription process will greatly help me in the future," said recent graduate Megan Murph. "Because I want to continue my education in Musicology, knowing how to conduct an interview and such when I'm researching a music history topic in grad school just might come in handy!"
The co-curricular part of the IWIL journey includes a three-tier mentoring program. IWIL sophomores meet with adults in the western North Carolina community to talk about their dreams and career goals; incoming IWIL women are introduced into the program by sophomores; and they work in a program with sixth grade girls at the local middle school. "The thought of being able to make a difference in the lives of young women is what motivates me to keep on going. I want nothing more than to inspire and move others," said Jennifer Novoa from Miami, Florida.
Special programs continue all year. In addition to our own Fall Banquet, the Holiday Talent Show, and a Closing Celebration, IWIL hosted a Get Out the Vote rally, a yoga and relaxation session, a meeting with the first African American mayor of Asheville, and a resume-writing workshop, to name a few.
IWIL is "one example of Brevard College putting into action its motto of "Learn in Order to Serve". "This program has the potential to shape future women leaders for our state and country."
For more information contact Margaret Brown at email@example.com