15:32 PM

UHCL Women's History Month kickoff: A Celebration of Women in Leadership

Associate Director of NASA’s Johnson Space Center Donna Shafer was the keynote speaker at University of Houston-Clear Lake’s “Celebration of Women in Leadership” panel discussion event on March 1, launching a series of Women’s History Month activities to take place on campus.

Shafer’s discussion, entitled “Giant Leaps Start Here,” focused on the attributes of great leaders, the importance of remaining open to learning lessons along the way, and that becoming a team player was among the most critical keys to success. 

“Great leaders are team builders, collaborators and servant leaders,” she said. “As a leader, you empower your team, trust them to meet your expectations, praise them in public and share in their success.”

Discussion moderator and NASA Alumni League President Estella Gillette said that UH-Clear Lake was a great forum, not only for providing the skills for chosen academic disciplines, but also by providing practice opportunities.

“When we become involved in activities other than the required courses, there are opportunities to network with and learn from other students, faculty, and staff, who can also become mentors and role models,” she said. “We learn to be members of teams and to collaborate, skills that are essential in the workplace.”

Gillette, a UHCL double alumna, added that alumni who have had the benefit of UHCL’s “basic” training in skills other than their chosen disciplines could continue as role models and mentors to women currently enrolled.

“Younger women have the advantage of having access to us, who are more experienced women,” she said. “Some of us are ‘pioneers’ in the quest for making room for women in all disciplines and in all levels.”

 The event was emceed by Logical Innovations President and CEO Denise Navarro. Other panelists were UHCL College of Education Dean Joan Pedro, Barrios Technology President Kelly Page, East End Chamber of Commerce President Frances Castañeda, and local artist Diane Muniz.