Ewha Holds Second Women’s Leadership Forum (WLF), Hosting Network of Female Presidents of Asian Universities
The Second Women’s Leadership Forum (WLF) was hosted online by Ewha for two days from October 23 to 24, bringing together female presidents of co-ed universities and women’s universities across Northeast Asia and the United States.
Held under the theme of “Innovation of Women's Education in Northeast Asia and Greater Cooperation to Nurture Female Talents,” this year’s forum was attended by about 100 guests including presidents, vice presidents, deans, and heads of offices at women’s universities as well as organizers from the host organizations, the United Board for Christian Higher Education and the Ewha Institute for Leadership Development. This year's event was co-hosted by Ewha and the United Board, a US-based foundation that supports education in Asia, and co-sponsored by the Scranton Women’s Leadership Center in Korea and the Wesley Foundation in Japan.
On October 23, the first day of the forum, President Kim Heisook of Ewha Womans University delivered a keynote speech titled “The Future of Women’s Universities: Normalizing the New Normal,” followed by a panel discussion on “Re-visioning Higher Education: Women Leading the Changes.” Participants were given the time to discuss changes that have occurred in terms of leadership in academia and industries since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and important traits for next-generation female leaders. In addition, participants were divided into small groups for the online buzz sessions to discuss ways to innovate and nurture women's education.
A workshop was held under the theme of “Leadership Education for the New Normal” for second day of the forum on October 24, with the participation of Jackie Jenkins-Scott, former president of Wheelock College in the U.S. To conclude the workshop, WLF Declaration: Seoul 2020 was announced. The WLF Declaration outlines the resolution to actively participate in shaping the new normal by exercising women's leadership in the post-COVID-19 era with the aim to shift existing paradigms and recreate the social environment from the perspective of women. It is expected to become the cornerstone for fostering female leaders and female talents in Asia amid technological advancements in science and changes in the university structure that have been caused by COVID-19 pandemic.
The forum is regarded as a venue to establish a diverse network to share ideas and concerns over the future of universities among those who are actively involved in the operation of universities, and jointly explore innovative educational models for the long-term development of higher education institutions for women in Asia as well as for the realization of well-rounded education and gender equality.
As one of the world's largest women's universities and the world's premier intellectual community for women, Ewha will continue to work on solving various challenges to foster female talents by strengthening its network with other women's universities in Asia.