Thompson Rivers University

Paving the path to gender equality

March 3, 2017

It was a big day for the TRUSU Lean In Leadership for Gender Equality Club when club president Emiko Ohama gained recognition on Twitter from a major influencer in the field. Ravi Karkara’s 30,000 followers took notice when he retweeted one of Ohama’s tweets—an infographic showcasing gender inequality in the workforce.

Karkara, the senior advisor on strategic partnerships and advocacy to the deputy executive director, United Nations (UN) Women, is a leader in gender equality. He recently developed a partnership between UN Women and the City of New York, organizing a unique gender equality march with over 20,000 participants from the UN headquarters to Times Square.

After making some connections via social media, Ohama received an invitation to visit the UN headquarters in New York to attend the Commission on the Status of Women Youth Forum on Gender Equality. An experience that is sure to impact the future direction of the Lean In club, which in its debut year, is already making waves.

Currently, Ohama is busy organizing the EMPOWER, Health, Wellness and Leadership Conference taking place during iDays and coinciding with International Women’s Day.

The event aims to unite business professionals, community organizations, educators, WolfPack athletes, university and high school student leaders. Panel speakers will discuss health, wellness, gender equality and leadership.

“Gender equality is a major issue globally and sometimes it feels hard to tackle these big issues on a global scale,” said Ohama. “This event, and the goal of our club, is to make an impact locally by helping to inspire young men and women and provide financial support.”

Headliners include UN policy advocate Steve S.J. Lee, international speaker, entrepreneur and career strategist Courtney Kirschbaum, and psychic medium Michelle Morrison.

See full line-up

To support this initiative, the “women of TRU” came on board to as a major sponsor, pulling together $1,300 in support of this event.

“This student led initiative has great significance in terms of gender eqaulity and women as a powerful force in the work place,” said Associate VP Marketing and Communications, Lucille Gnanasihamany. “These students are bringing attention to this timely and relevent topic, and as the women of TRU this shows our commitment to supporting students and supporting this cause.”

Associate VP Marketing and Communications, Lucille Gnanasihamany with Lean In president Emiko Ohama .

Revenue from ticket sales will goes toward the club’s initiatives. The goal of the club is to empower underprivileged female youth, male and female TRU students in financial need with self-reliant income, work experience and exercise.

The conference takes place on Wednesday, March 8 in the TRU Grand Hall from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information
Lean In Leadership for Gender Equality Club

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