Women in Leadership Roles: How ILSC is pushing the boundaries and breaking the glass ceiling


Contributed by Nadine Baladi, Director of Operations, USA

I love ILSC for a number of reasons but primarily, for its mission and its diversity. Here, I work alongside men and women from 50+ countries every single day, and together, we strive to grow, transform and self-actualize. There’s no other place I know quite like this!  And since diversity is a richness and a direct line to success, ILSC is golden, right?!

Recognizing and embracing different skills, attitudes, experiences and perceptions allows us to also embrace the changing needs of our student body. Research data has proven that the more diverse a team is, the better the outcome.  So what happens when diversity disappears “at the top” and the decision-making group is dwindled down to (mostly) males?

I’m excited to share that ILSC is doing something about it!

Enter the stage: www.lead5050.com!

In January 2017, three inspired (and inspiring!) women in the international education field launched a networking and mentor group with a social mission:  raise the profile of women in the sector. Lead5050 “believe that women’s empowerment is good for the economy and therefore good for everyone.  To succeed, a company needs ALL of its employees to be at the top of their game. […] Everyone, male and female, has a crucial role to play in calling inequality out.” ILSC agrees. I agree with ILSC.

Of course, supporting women is nothing new to ILSC! Most of us have been inspired by ILSC-New Delhi’s Learn to Earn Program, and many of us have personally volunteered time and donated money to fundraise for this initiative.  For those who don’t know: “Learn to Earn” is a non-profit program aiming to provide free English education and job skills training to young disadvantaged Indian women. As English is one of the official languages in India, anybody hoping to get ahead in life needs to have a basic knowledge of it in order to access the ever-growing service sector and hospitality jobs. At the end of their program, ILSC helps the graduates with job interviews at local businesses in hopes of them gaining better paid employment in safer conditions.

Oh yeah, I guess you can say that’s another reason why I love this place!

At ILSC, just like at Lead5050, we believe in the power of words: by promoting discussion around the topic, and by putting gender equality at the top of the agenda, we can challenge the status quo. We also believe in the power of action, and in order to support this important initiative, ILSC has committed to 5 concrete action points with Lead5050:

  1. Become “friends” of Lead5050 by donating funds that will support the operations of this initiative. Click here to view the announcement!
  2. Participate in the Mentorship program – launching soon!
  3. Launch Lead5050 Circles on our own ILSC campuses around the world.
  4. Nominate our Learn to Earn program for a Women in Leadership Award
  5. Participate and lead events, sharing Lead5050’s mission and vision with others outside of ILSC. And Click here to view a Facebook Live video of an event like this.

ILSC cares deeply about developing leadership capability, enabling career progression and assisting women to more effectively manage the opposing challenges of career and life. Although ILSC is doing this around the globe, we can’t do it without your active participation! Join me to continue the discussion!



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