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Women’s Leadership Conference Stresses Empowerment and Education

Conference keynote speaker Robyn Hatcher addresses Women's Leadership Conference attendees at the Conference Center at Central Penn. Hatcher encouraged the audience to "let your light shine" and to "embrace your albatross." Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

Conference keynote speaker Robyn Hatcher addresses Women’s Leadership Conference attendees at the Conference Center at Central Penn. Hatcher encouraged the audience to “let your light shine” and to “embrace your albatross.” Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong.

Over 200 women educated, encouraged and energized one another

By Sherri Long

Knightly News Reporter

Education and empowerment for women were the main purposes of this year’s Women’s Leadership Conference, held last month in the Conference Center at the college.

Rubina Azizdin, career counselor and part-time faculty member at Central Penn, organized the event, which was geared toward women in all stages of their career paths.

The conference featured women leaders in the community and businesses. Attendees ranged from current college students and college leadership, to business employees, leaders and entrepreneurs.

Della Archer, director of employee relations for Harrisburg Area Community College, said she was attending the Women’s Conference because she “looks for ways to network with other women professionals,” and she values hearing “stories of other women to find out how they got to where they are.”

Archer’s coworker, Stephanie Maben, executive assistant to vice president of student affairs at HACC, explained she was attending because “working women face so many challenges. Any opportunity to network with other women is great.”

Albatrosses and rock stars

The conference started off with the breakfast keynote message from speaker and communication expert Robyn Hatcher. Hatcher encouraged attendees to “let your light shine” and to “embrace your albatross.” The albatross, Hatcher explained, is deadweight or a burden. By identifying it, you can reframe it and turn your misfortune into your mission.

Attendees were told to “get your sparkle on,” stood up by their tables, put their hands on their hips, heads held high and shouted, “I AM (after which they inserted three strengths from a list that was at each table)!” This energized the group, and kept the positive and energetic momentum going throughout the conference.

After the uplifting message from Hatcher, attendees went to the breakout sessions of their choice. Sessions were themed with such titles as Knowledge is Power, Financial Literacy, Achieving Your Dreams, Live Your Truth, and Interview Like A Rock Star.

Sharon Kelly, an accounting major student at Central Penn, said, “When I had my first interview, I was really nervous. They gave me this paper to review and asked some questions and I kind of stumbled through it.”

The main reason Kelly attended the conference was for the breakout session How to Interview Like a Rock Star — How to Slay Every Interview for Every Job You Ever Wanted, presented by Amanda King, owner of PeopleSavvyHR Group, to better her chances at her next interview.

 

Tiffany Chang Lawson, executive director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, encourages attendees to “Live Your Truth” during her breakout session at the Women’s Leadership Conference at Central Penn College. Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

Tiffany Chang Lawson, executive director of the Governor’s Advisory Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, encourages attendees to “Live Your Truth” during her breakout session at the Women’s Leadership Conference at Central Penn College. Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

Etiquette and power

After the breakout sessions, attendees participated in a five-course luncheon during which Kathy Christopher, general manager for Bridgewood Catering at Central Penn, gave a presentation on proper etiquette for each course of a meal during networking events and luncheon interviews.

During dessert, an energetic fashion show was presented by designer and local business woman Amma Johnson, featuring her AMMA JO fashions, which were modeled by several Central Penn employees, including President Karen Scolforo and Vice President of Academic Affairs/Provost Linda Fedrizzi-Williams. The luncheon ended with the presentation of the Student Leadership Awards.

The conference concluded with a Powerhouse Panel, featuring local women leaders from the government, business and nonprofit sectors. After each panelist made introductory remarks, attendees could ask questions. Questions attendees asked covered discrimination, balancing family and career, and being compassionate, empathetic and successful.

The panel was well-received by attendees.

Azizdin closed the conference by thanking everyone for attending.

From left, Central Penn personnel Adrienne Thoman, Sandra Box, Dr. Linda Fredrizzi-Williams, Megan Peterson, Karen Scolforo and Krista Wolfe ham it up in some clothing they modeled at the conference.

From left, Central Penn personnel Adrienne Thoman, Sandra Box, Dr. Linda Fredrizzi-Williams, Megan Peterson, Dr. Karen Scolforo and Krista Wolfe ham it up in some clothing they modeled at the conference. Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

Reflecting success

“Everything went really well. Actually, it went better than expected,” Azizdin said about the event during a recap phone interview.

This year’s conference was the second annual Women’s Conference Azizdin organized. Attendance increased from 125 last year to 200 this year. She is “definitely planning on a 2018 conference.”

When asked what she’s learned or any improvements she’ll make for next year, Azizdin spoke about the technology of event planning. She is researching a new registration tool to use because some of the payments did not go through and because of lack of notifications when someone registered. She also advised planners to confirm what technology is in each room a presenter will be using.

“One of the rooms we used had new computer and presentation systems installed over the weekend,” Azizdin said.  “Thankfully, we were able to have someone from IT help with getting the equipment running.”

Azizdin recommends having one or two presenters as back-ups, “just in case.” One of the presenters could not attend due to a family emergency. One of the Power Panel participants, a friend of Azizdin’s, was able to present in that speaker’s place.

Azizdin continues to get positive feedback from attendees and through responses from emailed surveys.

She has several ideas for next year’s conference topics and planning, including looking for more corporate sponsors to help fund the event and for more giveaways at the conference.


Sherri L. Long is president of the Knightly News Media Club @ Central Penn College.

To comment on this story, or to suggest a story, contact the KnightlyEditors@CentralPenn.edu

Edited by media club co-adviser Prof. Michael Lear-Olimpi

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The Central Penn College #IAM Campaign

Knightly News Secretary spearheads PSA Campaign for Initiative

By Paul Miller and Sarayuth Pinthong

Knightly News Secretary Sarayuth Pinthong offers a fantastic look at the #IAM campaign from The Office of Diversity and Global Education at Central Penn College as part of a project in his COM225:  Writing for Public Relations course.

The #IAM campaign is in support of their “Our Diversity” messaging in the fall term of 2016.

The campaign informed students and staff members about “going beyond the optics” and understanding our similarities and commonalities. Everyone’s responsible for diversity on campus.

For more information contact: Office of Diversity and Global Education at Central Penn College

Romeo Azondekon: 717-728-2437

romeoazondekon@centralpenn.edu

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A Sit Down with Jasmine Harvey, New SGA President

A New Year Presents New Adventures as Students Select New Class President to Lead the Way Forward

By Sarayuth Pinthong

Knightly News Reporter

Nov. 8, 2016, marked another change in our nation. That was the day Donald J. Trump was elected the new President of the United States.

Central Penn College also elected a new representative of the student body. That person was Jasmine Harvey. Knightly News reporter Sarayuth Pinthong had the opportunity to sit down with Harvey as she shared some details about herself and her new position as Student Government Association (SGA) president.

KN: Central Penn College is a very diverse institution. Where are you from and how did you become a student of Central Penn?

JH: I’m from Philadelphia. I became a student because I received a letter in the mail about the school. I just took a chance and got accepted. I decided to come here to see how the campus was. I didn’t know that my cousin was attending (at) the time.  We did a tour and I liked it. I enjoyed that it was a small campus and everything was so close.

KN: How long have you been a student at Central Penn and what do you enjoy about the college?

JH: This is my sixth term here. What I like most about this school is that they give their students opportunities to do what they like to do. If you really want something to be done on campus all you have to do is email somebody and they’ll get right back to you. For example, we have a cheerleading club on campus. We didn’t have that before. That was something (students) really wanted to happen and they did their best to do it.

Jasmine Harvey, student government association president at Central Penn College, poses for a photo in the ATEC building, February 8, 2017. Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

Jasmine Harvey, student government association president at Central Penn College, poses for a photo in the ATEC building, Feb. 8.  Photo by Sarayuth Pinthong

KN: Central Penn College offers a variety of academic programs. What is your major and why?

JH: I’m a corporate communications major. I selected it as my major because I love writing. I know that in the communications field there’s a lot to do. There’s always an opportunity for you in any field with the major and that’s what I love the most. I like doing and trying new things. I didn’t want to be stuck doing one specific thing for the rest of my life. I want to branch out and learn.

KN: What would be your dream job?

JH: I probably would go more to the public relations side, like marketing. Recently, I’ve found that it’s interesting to me once I took my advertising class. Afterwards, I’ve learned to enjoy the process on marketing a product, how to get it out there and how to sell it.

KN: What does “SGA” stand for and how long have you been affiliated with SGA? What roles did you hold prior to being elected as the new SGA president?

JH: SGA stands for the Student Government Association. I’ve been a part of it for about a year now. Before I became president, I was the vice president.

KN: Individuals in positions such as yours research the actions and qualities of past members so they can develop a plan of action of what works and doesn’t work toward the future. With that in mind, who was your predecessor and any reason why he/she is no longer the SGA president?

JH: Sebastine (Virella) was our SGA president of 2016 and was supposed to be for 2017. Unfortunately, he had to take some time off from school to deal with some other matters in his life. Before I stepped up to the role to take this position, we were very good friends. We had a conversation about how to move forward with SGA, like the plans he wanted to fulfill before he left the school. He has my back 100 percent and I have his. He still helps me out with meetings and event planning. I always go to him to ask questions.

KN: How were you selected as the SGA president? Was there an election of some type held for the student body?

JH: We had Morgan Littleford, our secretary, and Yuli (Sutedjo), our treasurer. Our bylaws state that if our president, or anybody, resigns, the next person up will take control. Since I was vice president, the control was assigned to me. In the fall term we had an election where the students decided who they wanted as class president.

KN: What experiences do have that can help you as the next SGA president?

JH: Being around Sebastine provided the opportunity for him to take me under his wing. I feel like just being around him and seeing how he does everything, from planning to budgeting, gave me the chance to learn how to take on the role.

KN: Can you explain the roles and responsibilities of the SGA president?

JH: If the student body has any concerns, they can come to us with the problem. During our meetings we talk about issues that were brought up to us to find solutions on how to fix them for our students as fast as possible. Recently, we had an issue about the cafeteria. We decided to go and give out comment sheets for the students to fill out which provided us with suggestions on what food and style they wanted the cafeteria to have. We took that and went to the president of Central Penn for a meeting just to discuss issues about the cafeteria and what the students wanted to see. Just from that meeting the cafeteria did change.

KN: What is your view of the Central Penn student body and are their voices being heard?

JH: I would say that the voices of our students are being heard. I feel like the staff here does care about the students. They want things to change for the better. The staff is willing to help out any way they can, as long as you bring the problem to them by stating the problem and what you want to see changed. We have comment boxes that we put out during our events. During that time, we communicate with students by asking if they have any suggestions or comments they want us to present. We have an email address on our Blackboard page as well.  You can even come directly to me if anything is bothering you.

KN: Last term involved some negative incidents that attracted the attention of the staff of Central Penn along with the student body. Would you comment on that?

JH: As far as the past incidents, it just seemed like a bunch of miscommunication and not stating the problems or exactly what you wanted to see changed. It was a lot of stating opinions. When you want to see something changed, instead of opinions, state the facts … and have a plan to implement campus procedures accordingly, and in a better way.

KN: The whole picture of what’s going on isn’t always visible during certain situations. When negative situations develop, how can the SGA positively assist both the students and the staff of Central Penn?

JH: For SGA, we just take action as soon as we can. We go directly to students and staff to see what they want, and talk with both sides to come together to see what we feel needs to be brought up to the president during a meeting. If we handle the situation as soon as it happens, rather than waiting, the outcome could be better.

KN: What are your goals toward the future as SGA president and how can students get involved?

JH: My goals are for SGA to get more involved with all the clubs on campus. We do have a few plans to attend more club meetings to see how we can help other clubs, like trying to get them a budget, help with fundraisers or just be more successful. When it comes to students being involved with us, hopefully, when we go to other clubs they would see that we’re trying to help them out. Other than being the voice of the students, we also help out with community service hours. We do fundraisers to help out with the Education Foundation that gives scholarships to students.

KN: What would you like to say directly to the students of Central Penn College to help them better understand the roles of their SGA?

JH: SGA is here to help you guys out. If you don’t want to address a problem yourself, you can come to us so we can help. If you just want to start a club on campus and you need help, you can come to us. Whatever you need help with, we can help you out with it. That’s what we’re mainly here for – to help the students out in any way possible. We’re here to make your college experience the best one you have. I know that a lot of students want to do similar things that other colleges do. That’s what we’re here for. We’re here to make sure that whatever you want done on this campus, if possible, can be done so you can have that great college experience to share with your kids later in life – making good memories.

More information, inquiries or concerns can be submitted to SGA at sga@centralpenn.edu

________________________________________________________________________________________________

To comment on this story or to suggest a story, contact KnghtlyEditors@CentralPenn.edu.

Edited by Media Club President Sherri Long and club co-adviser Prof. Michael Lear-Olimpi.

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WRAP IT UP!

Condoms can prevent STDs.

By Sarayuth Pinthong

Media Club Reporter

Ah – picture it.

The mood is perfect. Everything is going right. You look at your partner and then it hits you: You have no protection.

What do you do?

Really, it’s no game

Central Penn students participated in a sex-ed Jeopardy parody game during a recent common hour near the end of fall term with guest speaker Kelly J. Gainor of Planned Parenthood of Central Pennsylvania, in the Capital BlueCross Theatre, to raise awareness about HIV infection and AIDS, for World AIDS Day.

As lead coordinator of the event, Central Penn Counselor Megan Cline reached out to Planned Parenthood for support to help educate students about safe sex to prevent infection with HIV and sexually transmitted diseases.

“My goal in having Planned Parenthood come to campus was to get the word out,” Cline said. “Planned Parenthood is a great organization that does amazing work for people of all ages.”

Gainor, senior community health educator at Planned Parenthood, spoke on topics that allowed students the opportunity to explore their knowledge of sexually transmitted disease (STD), preventive measures against STDs, including HIV infection and AIDS.

Gainor talked about and answered students’ questions about the proper use of contraceptives and different methods of exposure to HIV, and concluded the presentation with a demonstration of how to apply a condom properly.

About 40 students attended the session.

Watch the accompanying video from Whitman-Walker Health in Washington, D.C., for instructions on how to use a condom properly.

Use self-assessment and common sense

Take a second and ask yourself whether you know how to apply a condom correctly, what personal female contraceptive choices are available or what other barrier devices to prevent STDs, and protect yourself or partner against contracting HIV, may be available.

And here’s a sobering thought: When was the last time you were tested for STDs, if ever?

“The most important thing is getting checked,” Gainor said. “Because of the current medication available, the sooner you know, the longer you have to live (with HIV) – period.”

Getting checked is just the beginning. Knowing the ins and outs of self-protection is also important.

Gainor informed her audience on how to properly inspect a condom before use. She also explained the various ways of transmitting STDs and, of course, the precautions necessary to protect oneself when engaging in sexual activities.

“Certainly, in a college campus, having safe sex and making safe sexual decisions, is something that’s very important,” Central Penn Activities Director Adrienne Thoman said. “It’s going to have ramifications for the rest of your life.”

It happens – a lot!

Becoming exposed to STDs is still common. Taking a serious stance on the matter is just as important as using protection. Despite what you may believe, exposure to and infection with these ailments can happen to you.

“I don’t think they believe that they can catch it so easily,” said Lester McMillan, an entrepreneurship major. “I beg to differ. It’s quick to get ‘burned.’ I feel it’s just best ‘to wrap it up.’”

“Students seem to be aware and understanding of general knowledge about sex,” Cline said. “But they don’t always seem to accept the reality of if you’re having unprotected sex, your chances of unplanned pregnancies and/or transmission of sexually transmitted infections increases significantly.”

At Central Penn, condoms are available in Thoman’s office and in the athletics office, in The Underground, and in the Residence Life Office, in Bollinger Hall. They are also available in many stores, particularly drugstores, such as the Rite Aid in the Enola Plaza, and in most physicians’ offices.

Gainor explained that World AIDS Day, which was observed on Nov. 30, is to raise awareness of HIV and the to make people aware that it’s still a problem

“We want people to be aware, so they can get checked and maybe protect themselves,” Gainor said. “Getting tested is something I wish people would take more seriously.”

So, think back to the scenario at the beginning of this article. What would you do? Would you continue, and hope for the best? Or would you take a stance and protect yourself and your partner?

So – what would you do?

It’s all about getting tested, protecting yourself and not getting HIV or another sexually transmitted disease in the first place.

Planned Parenthood helps people plan parenthood through education and medical services. For more information go to www.plannedparenthood.org


 

The resources below provide STD testing, and other health and sexual/reproductive health services.

Planned Parenthood in Harrisburg

Alder Health Services, Harrisburg


 

To comment on this story, or to submit a story idea, contact the editors at KnightlyEditors@CentralPenn.edu.

Edited by media club co-adviser Prof. Michael Lear-Olimpi.

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