On Friday, March 17, a group students traveled to New York City to meet with an accomplished group of inspiring Haverford alumni for the 2nd annual Haverford Women’s Leadership Tea. This year’s Tea was organized by Rachael Garnick ’17 and Anna Kullnigg ’19 who continued the tradition after attending the inaugural Tea that was organized by Grace Mangigian ’16.
Below are some reflections about the event from Haverford Women who attended.
“Something I know as an outgoing senior that I did not realize as an incoming freshman is that one of the best things about going to a small liberal arts college like Haverford is the strength and engagement of our alumni base; almost every alum is willing to help a fellow Haverfordian in some way. Over the course of my time at Haverford, I have learned more and more just how essential it is to tap into this powerful base for advice, guidance, and support. Some of my most valued mentor relationships began with a simple informational phone interview. Attending last year’s Women’s Leadership Tea helped me identify yet another pathway through which alumni-student relationships could be fostered, and alumnae-female student relationships at that. I was eager to get involved again this year so I could help recreate the space that Grace Mangingian so thoughtfully constructed in the tea’s inaugural year, a space in which wisdom was shared not only alumnae-student but alumnae-alumnae and student-student. With amazing leaders like Grace and the other WLT attendees in our community, I have no doubt that this event and events like it will continue into future years and grow into something bigger” – Rachael Garnick ’17
“The Women’s Tea was a great space for me to see certain women’s specific issues highlighted and discussed in an in-depth, Haverfordian way. The sheer amount of talent and ability of the alumnae branched such a variety of fields, but I was struck at how similarly each approached dedication to their job and the life outside of work. While at this moment in time, the working world is not as welcoming or accepting of women’s obligations (and expectations), these women defy expectations. It was inspiring to witness, and I am so honored and proud to be a part of the same groups of spectacular women” – Hannah Krohn ’17
“The leadership tea was incredibly helpful. The women provided true gems of wisdom such as ‘choose the boss instead of the company’ and that you want to find a career where your skills and passions intersect. I had such a wonderful time learning about the ways in which these accomplished women utilized their diverse, liberal arts background throughout their careers. The experience was well worth the trip to New York City” – Molly Biddle ‘20
“I learned from the Women’s Leadership Tea that there is no one path after Haverford, even for graduates with the same degree. These alumnae inspired me to learn about as many new things as I can at Haverford so that by the time I graduate I will have a sense of what it is I like to do long-term and will know how my interests are connected. I’m so grateful for the support of these Haverford graduates and the CCPA” – Alison Rosenman ’20
“It was such a wonderful experience to meet the alumnae. Two things that will stayed with me that was said during the tea was first, to pick and choose your battle. Second, always sit at the table, because I belong at the table. There were much more said that I will always remember and I am grateful for being able to attend” – Nichole Almanzar ’20
“The Women’s Leadership Tea was such a great networking event for current Haverford ladies like myself because it introduced us to a successful group of women who were able to translate their liberal arts degrees into meaningful careers in the fields of their choice. One aspect of Haverford that is both wonderful and scary is the idea that they want to prepare you for anything that comes your way, and as a junior starting the job search process soon that can sometimes feel like you are prepared for everything and nothing at the same time. These women in particular all stressed the importance of knowing the twists and turns your path will inevitably take and accepting the unknowns in your future while still working hard to achieve the level of success you want. Thanks to the event, I know I have the support of a wonderful group of Haverford alumni behind me as I go into the real world, and seeing their success is comforting to me in that I know that with people like that setting an example, I can get out their and conquer anything” – Jessica Blitz ‘18
“I really enjoyed attending the Women’s Leadership Tea. It was a wonderful opportunity to meet with accomplished alumnae and hear about their experiences in the workplace. I appreciated all their advice, but specifically about self-advocacy and advocating for other women in the workplace. I thought this event was extremely empowering and I loved seeing so many inspiring women supporting each other” – Sasha Mathrani ’18
“Attending the Haverford Women’s Leadership was a very special experience. The professional and life lessons that I learned from the alumnae were helpful and inspirational. I was very fortunate to be a part of this event and plan to utilize the advice I was given throughout my career” – Olivia Roth ’20
“I had an incredible time at the Women’s Leadership Tea and was extremely inspired by each of the alumni’s generosity in terms of sharing any advice and insight. Not only was I able to connect with these amazing women through our discussion groups, but I was also able to connect with many of them afterwards via email and on the phone. This event truly showed me the importance of networking and also how easy it can be when having such a kind and supportive network like the alumni women we met at the tea. For example, Julie Min was kind enough to ask her brother Robert Min (Haverford College alumn) to reach out to me and advise me on my future medical career path, which I am extremely grateful for as I would not have dared to reach out to any alumnus before this event” – Kathryn Sommer ’17
“This event reaffirmed to me how fun networking can be. I was incredibly inspired learning how these women found their way into their respective industry. A key takeaway for me was seeing how crucial their experience at Haverford was in shaping who they are today. The moment of connection between Vivian and Nancy stood for how close the Haverford community is despite the separation of time. I loved the organization of the event, the space chosen, and the general warmth within the room. The alumni seemed generally interested in our lives and clearly wanted us to succeed. The advice I received was extremely valuable and I feel confident that I will refer to my notes later in life when seeking guidance” – Isabel Agnew ’17
“My main takeaway from the WLT was how to navigate different power dynamics in the workplace. Staying true to yourself, not only as a woman, but also as someone with a Haverford education, is vital for success in the workplace. The stories shared by the incredible women at the WLT make me excited to take on the real world next year, and I am grateful to have female role models as I transition from Haverford. Some of the most formative pieces of advice I gained at the WLT include practicing self-advocacy, asking for help if you are unsure of how to navigate a new situation, and the importance of balancing work life and personal life. I am thankful for all the alumni who participated in the WLT, and hope that one day I might be able to come back to share my stories with future Haverford women” Hannah Rice ’17