Note: this content was provided by the office of D.A. Ryan.)
CAMBRIDGE – Last week Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan and Middlesex Partnerships for Youth, Inc. hosted more than 475 students from 30 middle and high schools across Middlesex County at this year’s “Empowering Girls 2016” conferences held at the Broad Institute in Cambridge. This year’s theme, “Building Resiliency, Breaking the Glass Ceiling and Leading into the Future” encouraged young women in attendance to overcome obstacles, set the highest goals for themselves and build strong leadership skills to help promote themselves and lift up their peers.
“For these young women it is important to remind them that sometimes the hardest glass ceiling they have is the one they set for themselves,” said District Attorney Ryan. “This year we worked very hard to reinforce the message of resiliency. Attendees heard powerful stories from strong and successful women who shared their own personal struggles and failures. The message, we hope, that they take from this experience is that they can bounce back from disappointment and that they will find success through hard work.”
The fifth annual Empowering Girls conference built upon past conference themes designed to encourage confidence-building, self-assertion and goal-setting through compelling speakers and interactive presentations.
Speakers during both sessions inspired students by encouraging them to share their goals with each other and ask themselves hard questions including “what do you want?”, and “what do you care about?” designed to help participants identify what matters most to them. As part of the program speakers also educated students about important issues including equal pay and encouraged them not to simply wait their turn but to step up and seize opportunity.
Day one speakers were: Megan Costello, Executive Director of the Office of Women’s Advancement at the City of Boston, Kendra Foley, Watertown School Committee Member and Ally Donnelly, Anchor and Reporter at New England Cable News/NBC Boston.
Day two speakers were: Jesse Mermell, Executive Director, Alliance for Business Leadership, Andrea Campbell, Boston City Councilor and Nicole Jacobs, Reporter, WBZ News and former Cambridge Mayor Henrietta Davis.
More photos from the event can be downloaded via Flickr here.
Middlesex Partnerships for Youth, Inc., (MPY) is a non-profit organization which provides prevention and intervention resources and training to school districts and communities in collaboration with the Middlesex District Attorney’s Office. District Attorney Ryan chairs the MPY Board of Directors.