Voices of Leadership unites students, sponsors and community

Mount Mary faculty members have used the example of Shiza Shahid, co-founder of the Malala Fund, to lead their students into deep reflection on issues of leadership, social justice and courage. Ms. Shahid was the keynote speaker of Voices of Leadership 2017 at Mount Mary University.

Art Therapy: Expressing courage on canvas

Students explored the idea of leadership at the University’s open art therapy studio, the only one of its kind on a college campus. This center is staffed and facilitated by graduate students, who help participants connect the art-making experience to wellness, happiness and healing.

Communications: Creating social change

Malala’s personal crusade for education and equal rights became a worldwide movement, thanks in part to Shiza’s knowledge of business and organizational leadership. Using Shiza’s example, students in Marmy Clason’s Organizational Communications class analyzed how the Malala Fund grew strategically and channeled support.

Next, they tackled pressing social issues of today by researching social problems and identifying appropriate organizations that would need to be developed, modified or contacted to get the problem fixed.

Graphic Design: Bringing awareness through bold visuals

Hands reaching upward, toward symbols of freedom and empowerment, is a visual statement that communicates and connects Shiza’s message effectively without words. Printmaking students are creating large-scale murals for the sweeping, arched windows of Bergstrom Hall.

Community Support: Tapping the power of women

All over Milwaukee, women of all ages have engaged in purposeful action and discussion. Business leaders and sponsors have come together to view the documentary, “He Named Me Malala,” while students and members of the School Sisters of Notre Dame came together for discussion.On Wednesday, a group of Mount Mary faculty and students will participate in “Malalaland,” a fundraising day at Divine Savior Holy Angels High School. Throughout Lent, students at DSHA are raising money to benefit the Malala Fund.

Sponsors contribute to leadership

We asked our sponsors about how courage applies to business leadership – from their vantage point as corporate and community leaders. Next, graphic design students turned their words of advice and inspiration into images.

Carlo Emanuele, Brady Corp.

Carlo Emanuele, Brady Corp.

To summarize in a sentence would be "Dare to stand alone." And to a little humor, poor leadership it would be.... "Some people are so far behind in the race, they actually believe they are leading!"

Annemarie Scobey-Polacheck, Johnson Controls

Annemarie Scobey-Polacheck, Johnson Controls

Courage as a leader comes from the heart. It starts out as red and beats strongly within the leader. As the beat continues, though, the red dissipates as the heart begins to radiate light out to all people around the leader. Those bathed in the bright light emanating from the leader are propelled in the same direction of the leader, and then their hearts too, beat red, then bright light to influence those around them to move in the same direction.

Dave Werner, Park Bank

Dave Werner, Park Bank

Courage to me is when I visualize what can be verses what is, explaining that vision to my team, and initiating change knowing that the results may not be realized until years into the future. It takes real courage (and faith) to change direction when things are going well without knowing or realizing the final outcomes until much later.

Heather Sullivan, Waterstone Bank

Heather Sullivan, Waterstone Bank

An image immediately sprung to mind of a genderless person, Keith Haring style, reaching with both hands into his/her belly and pulling out a ball of intense light that then exploded into the sky in front of them, illuminating everything and empowering the person to overcome darkness and fear.

Dr. Veronica Gunn, Children's Hospital

Dr. Veronica Gunn, Children's Hospital

Heart, grit, passion, what my grandmother used to call “gumption”. A sense of conviction that we must do what is right and simultaneous apprehension that we might not have the courage to do so. The willingness to shout: The emperor really has NO CLOTHES on!

Malala Fund co-founder: Live with purpose and create change

Shiza Shahid is an entrepreneur, investor, and women’s rights advocate who co-founded the Malala Fund with Nobel Prizewinner Malala Yousafzai at the age of 23. Her passion for change has landed her on numerous prestigious lists, including Time and Forbes 30 under 30. Today she supports other change-makers and her new seed-stage venture capital fund, NOW Ventures, funds startups around the world.

The annual Voices of Leadership event brings together and engages Milwaukee’s professional community around topics and ideas that underscore the mission and purpose of Mount Mary University.

“This event solidifies the pathways that connect Mount Mary’s creative community spirit to the inspirational new ideas our community needs in order to address the challenging issues of today,” said Beth Wnuk, Executive Vice President of Administrative Services at Mount Mary and Executive Director of the University’s Women’s Leadership Institute.

Past presenters include fashion model, designer, activist, social innovator and entrepreneur Lauren Bush Lauren; White House advisor to former President Barack Obama Betsy Myers; media executive Shabnam Mogharabi of media and entertainment company SoulPancake; former Hewitt Packard CEO and political candidate Carly Fiorina; and Pampered Chef founder Doris Christopher.

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There are certain moments in your life when you will have to decide who you are; Listen to your heart and be bold.

Shiza Shahid