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2015 PD & networking events
Five events over one year, targeted audience
The inspiring women program includes a series of five, large-scale open-invitation gatherings united under the umbrella of the ‘veski inspiring women professional development and networking event series’. The series is targeted at gender equity committee members, early-to-mid-career researchers, females with a background in STEM, research office administrative staff, and anyone interested in inspiring Victoria’s future female leaders.
Presenters, discussion, networking
The event series commenced in December 2014 and will conclude in December 2015. veski will gather a range of subject-matter experts to illuminate the topic at hand and spark discussion. Following the formal proceedings, there will be opportunities for networking. The events are held over approximately two hours, predominantly during a Monday lunchtime (12.00pm-2.00pm) with the occasional evening event (6.00pm-8.00pm).
First event sold out, audience polled
At the first event, guests were invited to join veski and hear from our inspiring panelists, and network with Victorian women across science, research, innovation and industry. More than 200 women with a background in STEM attended the Shell Theatre on a Monday lunchtime to discuss: overcoming gender bias; planning for and managing career interruptions; transitioning from academia to industry; and supporting women in STEM. Guests heard from Dr Leonie Walsh, Victoria’s Lead Scientist, Professor Sharon Bell, Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Charles Darwin University, Dr Natalie Hannan, NHMRC Early Career Research Fellow, Mercy Hospital for Women, Dr Jane Fisher, Immunology Medical Manager, UCB Australia, Dr Tu’uhevaha Kaitu’u-Lino, Research Fellow, Translational Obstetrics Group, Mercy Hospital for Women, University of Melbourne and Professor Bob Williamson AO, Honorary Senior Principal Fellow and Professor of the University of Melbourne. The audience provided feedback regarding the professional development topics they would most like to hear more about during the event series. Survey results showed that the three preferred topics were Marketing Yourself, Mentoring and Networking and that Monday’s at lunchtime at a CBD location were the preferred time and location for future events to take place. Please click the below event photo for more information on the event.
Gender equality: an everybody issue
At the second event, in March 2015, a point which had been previously shared by Professor Bob Williamson AO, Secretary for Science Policy, Australian Academy of Science at the inaugural event was unpacked by a panel of speakers including Associate Professor Stella Clark, CEO of Stella Connect, Professor Mary Wlodek is Professor of Physiology, Coordinator Researcher Development, Melbourne Research, at The University of Melbourne, Dr Mark Toner, Director of Gender Matters and Dr Buzz Palmer, CEO of STC Australia representing three unique perspectives on gender inequality. The event was titled “Gender Equality: It’s not a female issue, it’s an everybody issue”. As part of evaluation of the event veski asked attendees to provide further feedback for the preferred topics for future events: Marketing Yourself, Mentoring and Networking. Survey results showed that the preferred topic on how Market Yourself was Selling Your Skill-set and Interviewing Well, Building Real Relationships was the preferred focus for Networking and The Ongoing Relationship was presented as the preferred topic for Mentoring Skills.
Mentoring: cultivating a network of mentors & maximising the relationships
At the third event, on 1 June 2015, veski broached the first of two topics highly rated by the largely-female STEM audience as areas in which they are seeking professional development.
At the fourth event, on 14 September 2015, self-promotion was the the theme: Promoting yourself - marketing your talents. This topic was the most highly rated by the audience at the first veski inspiring women professional development and networking event.
The event series concluded on 30 November 2015 with an end-of-year wrap up event to celebrate the participation of the presenters and audience members, and to mark the end of a successful event series.