Message from WiT President Bec Langdon
Community is the heart and soul of WiT, so I’d like to start this message with gratitude to our warm, welcoming, and uplifting community. This year we welcomed 1200 new members to our community, and I share gratitude to all our 8800 members and affiliates for your engagement, contributions and ongoing feedback and support.
As a member-based not-for-profit enterprise, WiT is funded by individual and corporate members. We rely on the generous support of our partners and event sponsors to empower women to realise their ambitions, achieve their potential and gain the recognition they deserve. Without YOU, there is no US. On behalf on WiT, I thank you and appreciate your ongoing support in recognising and celebrating the valuable contributions of STEM women in Queensland.
I’d also like to thank my fellow volunteer Board Members for their commitment and steady hand in steering WiT towards our vision for the future. To our small but impactful operations team, thank you for supporting our members and keeping us moving; to our talented volunteer teams, thank you for always willing to lend a hand, and to our General Manager Lisa Cawthorne – thank you for being a constant voice and champion of Women in Technology.
As 2021 draws to a close, I’d like to take a moment to reflect on and share with you what our community has achieved over the past 12 months and look forward to what lies ahead as part our ongoing quest to Advance, Connect and Empower women in STEM.
Bringing our values to life and planting seeds for a vibrant future
In late 2020, WiT started a program to engage our members in this important piece of work and we thank all of our members who contributed to shaping the values that WiT now lives, engages and governs by.
In celebration of these values, this year we also launched the new WiT website and introduced the Sonja Bernhardt, Heart of our Values award as a new category in the annual WiT Awards.
To keep up with the changing world, WiT has also begun the process of transitioning to a Company Limited by Guarantee and bringing our Constitution up to date to reflect the position of the broader science and technology fields throughout the public and private sectors.
Unlocking the potential of women in STEM
Creating opportunities to connect, collaborate and learn from others in a safe, welcoming environment is crucial for building strong relationships and supporting individual career development.
This year, WiT delivered 42 events and programs for our members and the broader community, including our Step Up Webinar Series , two 12 week Mentoring Programs, Science Stream Events (held 3 times a year), Inspiring Women in STEM breakfast series (held quarterly) and Connectworks events (held quarterly).
We also empowered 24 female leaders from across STEM with the tools, the networks, the voice and the confidence that they need to take their seat at the board table through our unique Board Readiness Program.
Thank you to all the facilitators, educators and speakers who presented to our community in 2021 – we are grateful your expertise and the insights you shared with our community to inspire them to learn and empower them to advance their career in a unique and meaningful way.
What we celebrate … grows
Many women are doing amazing work and the annual WiT Awards are about giving them the recognition they deserve, building support for their work, and inspiring the next generation of leaders by showing what is possible.
This year we had close to 200 nominations, 100 applications, 35 finalists, 15 winners and 830 guests in attendance. While COVID-19 continues to impact lives and livelihoods locally, nationally and globally, I’m incredibly grateful that we were able to bring so many people together to celebrate the outstanding achievements and valuable contributions of women and champions of change in Queensland’s STEM community.
My heartfelt congratulations to our award winners, finalists, applicants, and nominees on your outstanding achievements, valuable contributions, commitment to your passion, and well-deserved success. I’ve got a feeling this is only the beginning of even more great things to come!
WiT will be 25 years young in 2022
Next year, WiT will be celebrating 25 years of our incredible community and impact. Planning and preparation is already underway to bring to life not only the last 25 years but to shine a light forward to the future of WiT.
We have a rich past and a vibrant future, with many exciting stories to share. And we’d love to share your story.
We’re curious to learn how being part of the WiT community has supported you to build thriving professional relationships, enhance your skills, strengthen your confidence and achieve excellence in your field. In 100 words or less, we’d love to hear your memories and experiences of being part of the community. Use our online form to contribute your story.
WiT continues to grow from strength to strength. We always remember where we came from but are always looking forward to where we need to be. An incredible community I’m proud to be a part of.
While 2021 isn’t quite over just yet, 2022 is a shining light of excitement for us all to look forward to!