Panellists urged women to take leadership position to prove mettle

Panellists at roundtable work­shop on women leadership have challenged women to take advantage of leadership opportunities and prove their mettle in the role.

This, they argued, was import­ant to defeat the many stereo­types against women who rise to decision making levels, inspire the next generation and bridge the gender inequality gap in the country.

Organised by the Merian Institute for Advanced Studies in Africa (MIASA), in collabo­ration with the German Histor­ical Institute Paris (GHIP) and the Centre for Gender Studies and Advocacy (CEGENSA) of the University of Ghana, the workshop had panelists includ­ing Professor Awo Mana Asiedu, a Senior Lecturer at the School of Performing Arts, Dr Doris Akyere Boateng, Senior Lectur­er at the Department of Social Work and Dr Jenny Mbaye, a Lecturer in Creative Studies at the University of London.

It brought together early and mid-career female academics from universities and research institutes across the African continent to discuss challenges and opportunities for women in academia.

Speaking on the theme; “Female Academic Careers in Africa: Positioning and prepar­ing oneself for Leadership in Academia,” Prof. Asiedu, en­couraged women in academia to be strong-minded and self-confi­dent in their capabilities.

“A lot of things begin from our minds, what you think you are what you become, so I think as women we need to work on our self-confidence because sometimes, we hold back because we think we might fail. I think we need to change that mindset and believe in our abilities as women,” she said.

Admitting challenges includ­ing patriarchal entrenchment, university hierarchies, societal and domestic responsibilities which often militated against the career progression of women, the Senior Lecturer advised women to create “a good work-life balance that allows you to proper in your research and academic.”

Prof. Asiedu advised manage­ment of educational institutions to create an inclusive work environment to allow females to thrive in their career, while being able to voice out their concerns and ideas to become great leaders.

In her submission, Dr Boateng advised women not to be ‘superhuman’ in their quest to meet all demands of them saying; “do the best you can, learn to collaborate, seek help where you cannot perform and position yourself to be relevant in your field of interest.”

“Find your rhythm, you cannot do everything or please everyone. Plan your time such that you can find space to pub­lish your papers and propel your career forward,” she urged.

The Deputy German Ambas­sador to Ghana, Sivine Flaklene, called for increased investment in the training of women to improve their self-esteem so that they can take on more challeng­es in their careers


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