The Suffolk Women in Leadership Alumnae Network (WIL) holds the mission of empowering and advocating for the professional and personal development of Suffolk women. Through our efforts, WIL provides resources and programming for both alumnae and students, linking these women to the larger Suffolk community. WIL continues a Suffolk tradition of volunteer-led programming, and we rely on alumnae and current students for our ongoing success. WIL takes a leadership role at Suffolk University to foster and provide social, educational, and networking opportunities to students and alumnae through a variety of events and activities. If you’re a woman and you graduated from Suffolk, you’re welcome to join WIL!
WIL has a twofold structure- our Leadership Committee and our General Membership.
• Leadership Committee- comprised of alumnae who meet regularly to plan and execute WIL events. Committee members’ responsibilities include contributing to the overall strategic programming plan, attending meetings, serving on ad-hoc committees, promoting and participating in WIL and other Suffolk events, and supporting the efforts of Suffolk’s fundraising goals. Committee members’ are the most involved in the steering of WIL and ensuring we fulfil our mission of advocating for professional and personal development of Suffolk women through our programming. LC membership lasts one year, generally running from June to June of the following year.
o Cordelia Pisacane, BS’ 08, Founder and Chair
o Leigh Handscuch, MPA’ 13, Director of Communication
o Maria Pappas, DIP’84, Director of Marketing
o Elizabeth Hinds-Ferrick, BA’86,MS’90, Committee Member
o Annika Khan, BSBA’09,MBA’17, Committee Member
o Laurie Teplow, MBA’10, Committee Member
o Roxanne Wilkins, BS’15, Committee Member
o Rachael Draper, MBA'17, Committee Member
o Alycia Tellen, MBA/MSA'17, Committee Member
• General Members- comprised of alumni and Suffolk faculty/staff who have expressed interest in being involved with attending and/or volunteering at WIL events. Our General Members are the first to be notified of our events.
• To connect the Suffolk woman, both alumna and student, to the larger Suffolk community.
• To ensure Suffolk alumnae feel invested in the success of Suffolk students by fostering relationships between alumnae and students.
• To provide programming for Suffolk alumnae and students that is geared at personal and/or professional development.
Signature Programming & Highlights:
Professional Success Expo (PSE)
The Professional Success Expo is an annual event staffed primarily by alumni volunteers and open to all Suffolk University undergraduate students. The event aims at providing information on a myriad of professional development topics including:
• Elevator Pitch
• Resume Review
• Speed Interviews
• LinkedIn profile reviews
• Personal Brand & Social Media
WIL Reads is a book club that meets every 2-3 months. We select our books/meeting dates through a poll that goes out to our general membership! Past WIL Reads selections have included the following: The Girls of Ennismore by Suffolk alum Patricia Falvey, The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom, and The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood.
Stir it Up! Connection Building and Cocktail Tasting
Held in March 2017, Stir it Up! featured career/life coach and entrepreneur, Susan Drevitch Kelly, BS ‘70. Susan walked the audience through strategies for preparing for, executing, and following up with networking opportunities. Mixologist and owner of Somerville’s Daddy Jones Bar, Dimitra Murphy, mixed up delicious cocktails for our audience.
In September of 2016, WIL hosted a viewing of the documentary film, Blindsided, and chat with the film’s director and producer, Lisa Olivieri, BSJ ‘90.
Uncorked: An Evening of Storytelling and Wine Tasting
Held in March of 2016, Uncorked was WIL’s first event exclusively for the alumni community. The event featured wine tasting by Brix Wine Shop and three alumnae speakers sharing their stories about second chances. The speakers were:
• Patricia Falvey, BS ‘70, author of The Linen Queen and The Yellow House
• Paula Doress-Worters, BS ‘62, co-founder and co-author of Our Bodies, Ourselves
• Magaly Rojas, JD ‘13, Immigration Attorney
Interested in joining or getting involved with the Women in Leadership Alumnae Network?