Benerd College, Sacramento agency design women’s leadership classes

Benerd College and the Junior League of Sacramento are collaborating to launch Women Empowered to Rise, which will guide women preparing for or hoping to hold leadership positions.

Women Empowered to Rise is a college-level, credit-bearing program that expands access to a University of the Pacific education to include women who might not have considered attending college. The program was designed by doctoral student Rebecca Franklin, working with visiting assistant professor Fred Estes. The sessions, which will meet October through June, will be led by guest facilitators with specialized experience, including negotiating, communication and management.

Rod Githens, a Pacific associate professor, and Erin Taboada of the Junior League lead the program.

Githens said they expect those who go through the program to grow into leaders. He added that developing a leadership identity—a core purpose—is a journey that Women Empowered to Rise “kick-starts” though the real-world application of program modules. Participants continue to grow after completing the program with connections to other female leaders, he said.

Apply by Sept. 24 at Women Empowered to Rise

The course goes beyond a traditional one-day seminar by creating a “community” of women leaders and aims to develop leadership and potential, regardless of previous gaps in educational opportunity.  Women Empowered to Rise is designed to “help develop the potential of women who didn’t have doors open because of education,” said Junior League President Alex Zucco.

The course is designed to fit varied schedules with sessions offered on evenings and weekends.

Githens said Benerd College will work toward more community involvement, with this program serving as a blueprint and for future initiatives to expand the educational opportunities to a broader base.

Zucco urges those enrolled to make it “a two-way street. Give us your feedback and don’t be intimidated by it being offered at a college. We want you to know this is wholly accessible.”

Added Githens: “Come with an open heart and open mind to learn and grow as leaders.”

Scholarships are available for Junior League members. Contact Erin Taboada at the Junior League for details.