By Sarah Togman
This year marks the 25th anniversary of the Centre for Research and Education on Women and Work (CREWW) which offers a part-time professional program for women to enhance their leadership and management skills. Over the next few weeks, five graduates from the program will be profiled.
Erin Chezick was inspired by her working environment to sharpen her skills.
“Working at a university, continued education is obviously something important and highly valued,” said Chezick, administrative co-ordinator with Carleton University’s Campus Card Office. “A background in business is important and useful no matter where you work.”
“I grew up in Thunder Bay, Ontario, and I moved to Ottawa right after high school to do my undergraduate degree here at Carleton,’’ said Chezick. “After I graduated, I got a job with the Student Experience Office.’’
Graduating with a science background, Chezick was encouraged by her manager to apply for the MCW, and decided to give it a try. She loved the experience and the skills she acquired and now Chezick has chosen to pursue her MBA at Carleton.
“It gave me a starting point where I wasn’t going to be a fish out of water,” she said.
“The biggest thing I got out of it was a really good, directive knowledge about business and a baseline to work from.”
The Management Certificate for Women Wins Points for Flexibility
Chezick praised the program for its flexible schedule. The program sessions runs two consecutive days once per month for seven months.
From September to March, students learn to envision and implement strategic initiatives, practice confident leadership, develop strategies to overcome unique challenges faced by women in management positions, and much more.
“Everyone [in this program] comes from such diverse backgrounds that when you all come together it makes you appreciate the broader context. What you learn is very practical, it’s relevant to your working life,” said Chezick.
“I don’t think I could have gotten the skills I learned from the MCW, in the timeline provided, from anywhere else,” she said. “Not everyone has the time or finances to embark [on] a full degree program.”
Offering Support and Innovation
Chezick was especially impressed with the support and innovation of the staff and faculty.
“You get so much personalized attention and feedback,” she said. “Hands down I don’t think I could have gotten the skills I learned anywhere else as quickly.”
Chezick explained that the biggest advantage she noticed – and the advice she would give to current and future students – is to take advantage of the networking opportunities.
“Make an effort to tap into those networks as early as you can. The connections you make will continue to help you throughout your career,” she said. “All of my classmates and I have continued to support each other and I got a lot of great experience out of that.”
More information on the Management Certificate for Women and the Centre for Research and Education on Women and Work, as well as applications for the 2017-2018 school year, can be found online here.