LAUSD Hosts Young Women’s Leadership Conference Online November 5 – Daily News
By Munina Lam
The Los Angeles Unified School District will host its ninth annual Young Women’s Leadership Conference from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on November 5. The virtual event is open to all students in grades 6-12.
The conference, which partners with organizations such as Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, East Los Angeles College, Disney and many more, aims to inspire and empower students by featuring guest speakers from different professions to motivate students.
The theme for this year’s conference is “Imagine the Possibilities!” “. The student members of the conference planning committee suggested it after being inspired by the LAUSD Superintendent. Speech “opening of schools” 2022-23 by Alberto Carvalho.
Some of this year’s speakers are doctors, judges, CEOs, pilots and business leaders, according to Lorena Franco, coordinator of the LAUSD Student Empowerment Unit. The conference has a limit of 1,000 attendees and registration closes October 28.
“A large number of [the speakers] faced the same challenges growing up that some of our students are currently facing,” Franco said. “We want them to share their journey and serve as role models for students.”
For student Sebastine Chun, a member of the conference planning committee, seeing Franco and former conference coordinator Brenda Manuel working together on the conference was inspiring.
“They showed me how to be an effective leader because they listen to the students…and they would find ways to help them,” said Chun, who has served on the committee for four years. “It’s actually quite important because having people listening is actually quite nice.”
Chun, a junior from Chatsworth High School, aspires to work in LAUSD’s Student Empowerment Unit in the future.
The conference planning committee has selected various speakers who understand the value of youth empowerment and can share the same journey as the students, in the hope that the students will be excited about the future.
The conference also teaches students skills such as networking and taking charge of their mental health.
At the 2021 conference, speakers taught students how to prioritize their mental well-being. Students were given a booklet to use as a journal and write daily affirmations.
Chun said she had mental health issues when school lessons moved online during the COVID-19 pandemic. “I started taking these steps [of writing daily affirmations] and it changed the way I see myself and what I do. It really helped me a lot,” she said.
Ella Salim, another student on the planning committee, said the previous conference helped her incorporate what she had learned about writing daily affirmations.
Salim, a senior at Girls Academic Leadership Academy at Miracle Mile, which is an all-girls STEM school, is looking forward to hearing from accomplished women from different careers, especially women in the STEM industry.
“I go to a STEM school and it’s always inspiring to hear from women who are in STEM because [women] are underrepresented in this field,” said Salim, who hopes to major in public health.
The pandemic, racism, housing insecurity and lack of basic needs have exacerbated anxiety, depression and suicidal feelings in school communities, according to an LAUSD report.
Students who have attended previous conferences have come away feeling empowered and inspired, according to Franco, and some have become involved in running the campus.
In addition to speakers, conference attendees can win prizes and enjoy entertainment. The list of speakers and awards will be announced in the coming days.
Students can register at https://tinyurl.com/mt4zfb69. The conference will accept 1,000 participants and registration closes on October 28. For more information, email the Student Empowerment Unit at [email protected].