With the commencement of Rising Stars application in April this year, many of our Rising Stars took the initiative to conduct intake workshops to introduce Wedu’s mentorship and leadership development programs to their communities. Over the month of May, a total of seven workshops were conducted by our Rising Stars in Nepal and Bangladesh. These Rising Stars shared their leadership journey with their communities, encouraging young women to step out of their comfort zone to discover their leadership potential.
Many Rising Stars come from male-dominated communities led by male leaders. In their communities, young women do not have role models to look up to and thus do not believe in their own potential to become leaders. As such, these Rising Stars aspire to become change makers and leaders in their community so as to set a positive example for young women. Shreya Joshi, one of the volunteers from the intake workshop at Dhulikhel Hospital Auditorium in Nepal, wants to tell young women that: “leadership positions are not something to be afraid of; as a leader, you make mistakes and learn to be better.”
However, conducting these workshops were not without its own set of challenges. For the Rising Stars who conducted an intake workshop for fellow students at Asian University for Women (AUW), they were hindered by the cyclone in Bangladesh and had to postpone their workshop several times. The floods around the city also resulted in a decrease in the number of workshop participants. Nonetheless, the workshop was still a success and attracted over twenty participants. For Shreeja Shikhrakar, she was overwhelmed by the sheer scale of her workshop. Held in the auditorium of Dhulikhel Hospital in Nepal, the intake workshop saw more than a hundred and fifty participants. The workshop was also graced by guest speakers like Dr. Rajendra Koju, Dean of Kathmandu University School of Medical Sciences, Dr. Sneedha Mainali, Nepal’s Top 75 Female Leaders and President of Society of Ex-Budhanilkantha Students, and Santosh Shah, Founder & CEO of Leadership Academy. Nevertheless, Shreeja managed to successfully deliver a comprehensive presentation to her audience and guest speakers.
In spite of the challenges, Rising Stars gained important experiences through conducting these workshops. Shreeja shared that conducting a large-scale intake workshop pushed her out of her comfort zone and taught her to never be afraid to try. “Not facing a challenge is even worse than facing rejection. If you try, there are chances of success. But if you do not try, then you have absolutely no chance of success,” Shreeja shared. Susana Salim, one of the organisers of the intake workshop at AUW, learnt to be more confident of herself. Before her presentation, she was extremely nervous. However, as she led the workshop, she became more confident of her skills and abilities.
We want to thank our Rising Stars for making an effort to be part of Wedu’s recruitment process. It is heartwarming to witness how the Wedu community has become a family of empowered young women eager to empower other women.
About the author
Pertina Seah is a sophomore at Yale-NUS College in Singapore and the Marketing and Communications intern at Wedu. She has experience working in both the public and private sector in Singapore and some of these experiences include ZALORA, the Ministry of Education, and People’s Association. She is passionate about promoting women empowerment, LGBTQ+ rights, and mental health awareness.