March 8, 2024 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn

As King’s celebrates International Women’s Day on March 8, students from our Gender and Women in Civic Leadership class are working to develop the next generation of female leaders by organizing the ChangeMaker Conference. As part of the conference, to be held at King’s on April 6, 2024, female and non-binary high school students in Grades 10-12, as well as undergraduate students, will come together to discuss gender and female leadership. 

“When I think of women's leadership, I think of resiliency and representation, so celebrating women through all of our milestones is beneficial to not just women but all of us in society,” says Luna Ghebredingle, a fourth-year student in Honours Specialization in Social Justice & Peace Studies.

The conference plans to explore what women and gendered leadership looks like, the interactions between women and non-binary civic leaders, and how their leadership is purposeful in advocating to make change for their community. The delegates will also examine intersectionality, the framework for understanding how aspects of a person's social and political identities (such as race, gender, sexuality, class, and disability) combine to create different modes of discrimination and privilege, and how it defines leadership.

Sarah Lishman, a second-year Politics and International Relations student, says the conference “will create a stronger sense of community for those who attend, and encourage them to be a part of the larger movement, moving towards more conferences, events, and change.” She hopes that participants will feel more confident, empowered, and inspired after attending the conference.

Lishman is also involved in the conference through her work on the marketing and communications team, and is excited to have the opportunity to help facilitate a conference as part of her learning. She says that women’s empowerment is something that is close to her heart and that she has always been passionate about, so it means a lot to her to be a part of such an important event.

Lishman says that studying at King’s has given her the confidence and skills to be able to succeed in her role. She is excited to use this conference as a learning experience. “The whole process has already helped me learn so much, and I can’t wait to hear from our speakers and attendees and learn from all of them as well,” she says.

Gender and Women in Civic Leadership is a Politics and International Relations experiential learning course in collaboration with Brescia University College. This course offers a unique experience for women and gender non-conforming students to learn about, and become engaged in, civic leadership and community-building. The students meet, network, and work with women-identifying civic leaders, gain insight into the opportunities and barriers facing women in politics, and examine how women’s leadership derives from their purposeful pursuit in advocating and making change in and for their communities.

Visit our Events page for more information on the ChangeMaker Conference.