The White House convening brought together a mix of business school deans, faculty, and administrators; policy experts; and female professionals from the Ellevate networking program.
It was exciting to participate in this day-long plenary session and to discuss our collective commitment to increasing women’s access to graduate management programs and to preparing our students to succeed in diverse work environments by leading by example around issues of equity and inclusion within our respective organizations. At the Yale School of Management, our integrated core curriculum also helps in this preparation by challenging students to think broadly and to apply diverse perspectives to solving complex problems.
The importance of diverse perspectives was a major theme of today’s convening, and this led to fascinating conversations and observations about ways in which we all—regardless of gender or perspective—can play a role in making business schools and business professions more accessible to women. It was inspiring to have the commitment of senior advisors to the president on this issue, and it served to remind all of us that issues of equity are fundamental and that inclusion needs to be a business imperative in order to prepare leaders for the management needs of the 21st century. Yale SOM has already taken steps toward this goal, with a commitment by our faculty to diversify the gender and national origins of the protagonists of cases used in the core curriculum. I look forward to continuing this work through the stewardship of the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) in expanding Yale SOM’s efforts to increase opportunities for women in business.