Women's Engineering Leadership Education and Development Program

contact us with questions or apply now for the Spring 2020 cohort


WE LEAD is a new high-impact offering from the Engineering Leadership Program that prepares Cornell women in tech and engineering to lead with confidence. It is open to undergraduate and graduate students in any engineering or related major.

We create space for talented women to develop skills and connections for success. Together, WE LEADers learn how to navigate challenges and leverage opportunities to become leaders with purpose. 

WE LEAD is for people who want to:

  • Learn how to manage gender bias in teams and organizations
  • Develop powerful leadership presence
  • Gain confidence in their abilities
  • Lead with their strengths, values, and purpose
  • Acquire professional skills in teamwork, leadership, and communication
  • Grow their networks with Cornell alumni and colleagues
  • Join a Tribe of like-minded women who are a source of support and encouragement

The Program

WE LEAD kicks off with an off-campus retreat where participants dive right in to the practice of courageous leadership. In the weeks that follow, participants grow their professional skills through interactive workshops led by Cornell Engineering and Business School faculty. Throughout, a professional leadership coach helps WE LEADers set and reach development goals. The program capstone is an intimate look at leadership in practice as College of Engineering alumnae share their lessons learned about how to thrive personally and professionally.

WE LEAD Schedule (Spring 2020)

March 20 – 22, 2020: You As Leader

Join your new cohort for a weekend at the beautiful Light on the Hill Retreat Center  (about 30 minutes from campus). Busses depart after classes are over on Friday and return Sunday evening. All lodging and meals are provided during this remarkable retreat in which you will take a deep dive into your strengths, values, purpose, and goals for your own leadership. Learn about the professional challenges and opportunities unique to women leading in tech fields, as well as the latest research on managing gender dynamics and bias. Guaranteed you will leave with a whole new perspective and a new tribe of allies.

March and April: Professional Development Workshops

Get access to some of Cornell's best faculty in these highly engaging and enlightening workshops (schedule TBD):

May 1-2, 2020: Capstone Celebration: Women’s Leadership in Action

Alumnae and professionals committed to women's leadership success join us for a Friday evening reception and a Saturday capstone event where they share their knowledge and experience. 

Coaching Throughout: 

As part of the program, WE LEADers receive up to five individual sessions with a professional leadership coach

Is WE LEAD for you?

WE LEAD is open to undergraduate and graduate Cornell students in engineering and related fields. You must be committed to your own growth, and you must be able to attend the initial retreat in its entirety. Cohorts are small and space is limited. To learn more or to apply to the current cohort, contact Program Director Prof. Erica Dawson at erica.dawson@cornell.edu.