The Council for Women of Boston College (CWBC) will offer a fellowship to undergraduates who pursue internships that advance women’s skills and leadership. The fellowship is being offered through the Colloquium, which is a joint initiative of CWBC and the Institution for the Liberal Arts.
Kathleen McGillycuddy, the Chair of CWBC and a BC trustee, said that the mission of CWBC—to advance the women of BC within and beyond the Heights—was central to the creation of the Colloquium Fellowship program.
“The CWBC is thrilled to be able to offer this special program and grateful for the support received in making it a reality,” she said in an email to The Heights. “We are confident that many students will benefit from the fellowships offered.”
In addition to creating the fellowship, the Colloquium often brings in speakers to discuss issues related to the advancement of women and leadership. Previous speakers include Madeleine Albright, Donna Brazile, and Mary Matalin.
An advisory board comprised of BC faculty, administrators, and members of CWBC provides oversight for the Colloquium. The board meets regularly to discuss potential opportunities for the Colloquium, including selecting future speakers and brainstorming possible events.
It was at one of these meetings that the idea for the Fellowship program emerged.
“The supportive Boston College environment enabled us to go from ‘idea’ to ‘implementation’ pretty quickly,” said Katherine Lemon, a BC marketing professor, in an email to The Heights.
The Colloquium decided it wanted to utilize some of the funding it received to benefit students more directly. As per the suggestion of BC faculty, who realized a need for increased funding to help students take on unpaid or low-paying internships, the Colloquium board created the Fellowship.
The board recognized that many BC students don’t have the financial ability to complete an unpaid or low-paid internship during their summers, despite the potential opportunity they might be presented with to gain experience and develop new skills.
Students who are selected for the Fellowship will attend the Colloquium speaker event, attend the BC Women’s Summit, and be mentored by CWBC leaders.
In the long term, students will also become integrated into the CWBC Colloquium Fellows alumni group and will mentor future fellows and continue to attend CWBC Colloquium events.
The CWBC Colloquium Fellowship is open to all undergraduate students who will be enrolled in courses on campus in the fall—regardless of gender. Those pursuing internships in organizations devoted to advancing women’s leadership will be eligible.
Mary Crane, the Thomas F. Rattigan Professor of English and ILA Director, is hopeful about the effect the Fellowship will have on BC students.
“The CWBC Colloquium is very pleased to be able to offer these Fellowships to advance women’s leadership, she said via email. “Those individuals chosen will be the inaugural CWBC Consortium Fellows for 2019. We’re looking forward to welcoming the new fellows at our fall Colloquium.”
Featured Image Courtesy of Jonathan Ye