OLP Women’s Symposium

Join us for OLP’s Sixth Annual Women’s Symposium on September 11, 2020. This event will be held virtually.

OLP is honored to serve as an epicenter for women's education and is excited to host this unique event centered on reciprocal learning and inspiration. We are incredibly thankful to have Jen Carroll (Illumina), Peter Dennehy (Newland), Carrie Sawyer (DEI Expert), and Danitza Villanueva '98 (Giving Back Magazine) as our amazing Co-Chairs for this wonderful event. Modeled after speaker panels at leading universities, OLP’s Women’s Symposium brings together top women leaders to share their insights and pathways to success with our students and the community. Through dialogue and modeling, these female leaders empower young women to stand up for themselves and fearlessly chase their dreams.

Funds raised from this event will benefit OLP's Carondelet Annual Fund which supports our students and programs in all areas, including academics, athletics, co-curricular activities, technology, campus maintenance, and so much more.

Ticket price and schedule for this virtual event will be posted soon!

Keynote Speaker: Haben Girma

Haben is the first Deafblind person to graduate from Harvard Law School. She advocates for equal opportunities for people with disabilities. President Obama named her a White House Champion of Change. Haben believes disability is an opportunity for innovation. She travels the world teaching the benefits of choosing inclusion. Her best selling book "Haben: The Deafblind Woman Who Conquered Harvard Law" was featured in The New York Times, Oprah Magazine, People, The Wall Street Journal, and on the Today Show.


Is she enough? Is she capable? Is she worthy? The answer to all these questions is: yes. Everyday double standards, comparisons, and gender stereotypes give women the impression that they are inadequate. In this panel, participants will share experiences of those societal pressures that women and girls often face while in pursuit of all of which woman is capable.

This panel addresses the reality that women must overcome many personal and professional challenges, the types of adversity women face, and how they have overcome these obstacles. It will focus on the pivoting that is sometimes required when plans change, the risk-taking that is so critical but often difficult for women and girls, our responses to inevitable failure and the self-compassion that is then required. These women will be speaking from their own experiences, spotlighting their resilience throughout their lives and how it has made them stronger and more determined to accomplish their goals.

She is passionate, she is a risk-taker, she is driven, she is bold -- she is daring. In this panel, you will have the opportunity to meet women who were the “1st’s” in their careers, facing challenges like the gender gap and socio-economic stereotypes in the workplace. These trail-blazing women will elaborate on the challenges they faced while bravely reaching for their goals, whether they be overcoming the fear of failure and self doubt, or learning how to deal with the unexpected when adversity came their way.

This panel features inspiring young women who are only a few professional and educational steps ahead of our brilliant students! Attendees will be inspired to create their own path based on the guidance and stories of these impressive women. In a world where paths can be predetermined, this panel challenges the societal constraints and pushes boundaries to imagine what can be. It discredits the generational stereotypes that young people cannot meet standards of success normally achieved by those with more extensive professional experience.


Danitza Villanueva '98 
 Giving Back Magazine

Jen Turbiak Carroll 
 Associate Director of Public Relations, Illumina

Carrie Sawyer 
 CEO and Founder, Diversity by Design

Peter Dennehy
 VP Customer and Market Research, Newland

2020 OLPWS Committee

Jamie Flannery, English Department Faculty Member 
Liz Bui, Vice President & Intellectual Property Counsel at ViaCyte, Inc.
Sandy Young, Vice President, J. Walcher Communications
Andi Scherschel, MSN, FNP
Rana Sampson, Community Relations Ambassador, Union Bank
Stephanie Kanaski, Director of Institutional Advancement
Kaila Weedman, Associate Director, Annual Giving
Bridgette Ouimette, Associate Director of Strategic Initiatives

Thank You, 2020 Sponsors

Innovator Sponsors

Change Maker Sponsor

Pathfinder Sponsors

Anne Sweeney

Trendsetter Sponsors


Change Maker

In Kind Sponsors

2019 Women's Symposium

View 2019 Photos