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ATHENA International Women’s Leadership Program

In collaboration with ATHENA International, the Olivet College ATHENA International Women’s Leadership Program provides a yearlong program designed to prepare students for leadership opportunities during their higher education experience and beyond. All WLI programming is open and welcome to students of all of genders, gender identities and gender nonconforming identities. All students interested in developing leadership skills will benefit from the OC ATHENA International Women’s Leadership Program regardless of background or genderparticularly those with an interest in advancing women in leadership roles.  

Participants receive leadership training utilizing the ATHENA Leadership Model, which ATHENA International developed through a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. This program was developed by leadership experts and based on surveys of hundreds of ATHENA Award Recipients. It is designed to prepare college students for leadership in higher education and beyond. Grounded in research, this program is based on eight core principles that inspire students to reach their potential:

  • Live Authentically: Leaders know their values and remain true to them.
  • Learn Constantly: Leaders seek knowledge.
  • Build Relationships: Leaders engage, empower and trust.
  • Foster Collaboration: Leaders welcome others to the work of leadership.
  • Advocate Fiercely: Leaders champion what they believe is right.
  • Act Courageously: Leaders dare.
  • Give Back: Leaders serve.
  • Celebrate: Leaders remember and rejoice.

Each principle of the model is presented and facilitated by members of the OC Women’s Leadership Institute Advisory Council, comprised of prominent women leaders, many of whom are ATHENA Award Recipients. This program meets the needs of emerging leaders and intends to provide all students tools and knowledge to empower themselves and others to be leaders.

  • 100% of program survey respondents stated that the program helped them gain more leadership effectiveness, self-confidence and knowledge.
  • Program participants also learned more self-love, self-care and self-awareness while feeling prepared to take on future leadership roles.

Who is eligible?Current first-year studentssophomores, juniors, seniors and transfer studentof all genders, gender identities and gender nonconforming identities.  


Please contact Jamilia Johnson, women’s leadership institute coordinator at jamjohnson@olivetcollege.edu.