Women in Leadership club educates students

Guest speakers discuss leadership positions, experiences undergone in their fields


Emma Leibowitz

Members of Miramonte’s Women in Leadership Club on a recent Zoom call.

During club day, students browse through various clubs that pique their interest. While frantically looking for a community to join, the Women in Leadership Club pops up on the roster, promising an informational and fun atmosphere that will teach participants about women in influential roles. The anticipation sets in for many students as they wonder what lessons and guest speakers the club will feature. President and Miramonte senior Sydney Gong is eager  to witness the various individuals who choose to participate in her valued club.

The Women in Leadership Club is led by President Gong, Vice President and senior Jeromy Chang, Secretary and junior Emma Leibowitz, and Publicity Chair and junior Erin Smith. English and journalism teacher Donia Gousios serves as the staff advisor for the club. Gong and the officers created the Women in Leadership Club in 2018, intending to empower and encourage women to claim powerful positions in various careers.  

“The response towards our club has been very engaged. We usually range between 10 and 20 participants per meeting,” Gong said. Encouraging women and removing the stigma surrounding women in supervisory roles was a task Gong and her other officers wanted to take on. “We wanted to empower women and let them know that they can take the opportunity to have influential leadership roles in the workplace,” Gong said.

During the club’s weekly Zoom meetings on either Wednesdays or Thursdays, Gong and the club officers invite guest speakers who educate participants about their leadership positions and experiences they’ve undergone in their respective fields. Some guest speakers have included Rachel Gate, Co-Founder of Dropprint Genomics, as well as Kim Peddle Rguem, the CEO of Dreyer’s Ice Cream. Students can hear about Zoom meetings through the club’s Instagram page @women_in_leadership_miramonte.

“We obtain guest speakers by reaching out through emails if we are interested in their occupation. We have also hosted people that we know personally that hold the same types of jobs. Guest speakers allow our members to listen to a specific job of a female in the workplace with a leadership role. We host women from diverse fields, like STEM and business,” Gong said.

Students, including sophomore Olivia Huynh, regularly attend club meetings to further learn about impactful women. “Every speaker has a different story to their achievements which is inspiring because it shows that we don’t need to follow the same path. I decided to join the club because women have a lack of representation in certain jobs, mostly involving STEM, and was curious to hear how they achieved such successes,” Huynh said.

 According to Huynh, women often feel the need to hesitate to claim leadership positions, which is unfortunate, and being a member of the club guides young girls like her to be confident.

The Women in Leadership Club encourages its members and other students to respect the authority every individual can possess regardless of their gender identity. “One of my friends took me to one of their meetings, and it was super encouraging and inspirational, and I think it’s super good for all young women to witness that and hear powerful women talk. I also think it is important for all people, not just women, because it breaks the stereotypes about men being in power,” sophomore Sandra Hoselton said.

After joining the weekly club meeting, you’re surprised by a guest speaker from Sephora: Kim Tarantino, who serves as Sephora’s Vice President of Corporate Communications. You participate in the meeting and learn about the experiences and challenges guest speaker Tarantino has gone through, all while widening your perspective about a different career. As a bonus, toward the end of the meeting, Tarantino announces a Sephora giveaway with all of your favorite products.