Recently I had the opportunity to make a presentation to Home Economics students at Alexandria University in Egypt! I am sad to say I did not get to visit this cradle of textiles culture in person but thanks to the power of the internet, I was able to present a video to the meeting on “Creativity and Entrepreneurship to Achieve Sustainable Development“. The goal of this meeting was to promote women’s empowerment through small projects. I focused on using the internet to market handicrafts. One of the big challenges in marketing handicrafts made by women from outside the large markets is that they have not had training on marketing and branding so the products they produce don’t necessarily appeal to the consumers. My presentation discusses how to develop an authentic voice in handicrafts in order to “tell a story” about “your local” to consumers who want to have an “authentic experience”.
In 2017, I was very honored to be approached by members of my region to submit my name as a nominee for IFHE President Elect. As part of the Leadership Council meeting in Khartom, Sudan in 2018, I developed and presented a 5 minute video about my vision for IFHE and for increasing future membership. It is posted on Youtube for your review.
One of the first questions my fellow faculty have asked about my seeking positions of leadership is “why do you want to do this”? I can’t write their tone of voice, so you will have to imagine their incredulousness mixed with suspicion. So, why do I want to “be” a leader? Firstly, I would beg to rephrase this. I don’t think I can be a leader. I know that if people put their faith in me, I become their leader. This means that the first element of my philosophy of leadership is that I need the help of those around me to become the leader I would like to be. This help comes when I listen carefully to the people who have asked me to lead. A given in this element of my philosophy is that leadership is not something you can take from others. This is especially true in the academic context. Many people are drawn to academics because they have a unique and powerful vision of the world that they want to experience and share. Continue reading “Leadership: How I see it”
The generation sandwiched between the post-war baby boom and the 1980s baby boom, popularly but not always happily known as Generation X, came of age during massive societal shifts that directly impact their perspective on the nature of home, family, and professionalism. Leadership for this generation was leadership into the third wave of feminism. With the 1980s being the signature decade for this cohort, while the generation has been stereotyped as the “slacker” generation, our hard-won distrust of the stability of fundamental structures of society was sharped by AIDS, trickle-down economics, divorce/single parenthood and the dawn of the two-income family.
The Spring Newsletter for US Division of the International Federation for Home Economics (IFHE US) has been published and I am happy to share.