Rotman MBAs Offered New Opportunities to Explore Gender Equality

by on September 15th, 2017

The University of Toronto Rotman School of Management welcomed its newest class of MBA students with two new opportunities to explore gender equality.

The first was a $50,000 Gender & the Economy Fellowship program competition, an initiative of the newly launched Institute for Gender and the Economy research center. Through the competition, five students were selected as fellows to lead a year-long project focused on gender challenges. For the 2017-2018 year, the fellows included students from the full-time MBA, morning & evening MBA, MBA/MGA, and JD/MBA programs.

“The response to our first year of the fellowship award program was overwhelming,” Professor Sarah Kaplan, founder of the Institute for Gender and the Economy, said in a press release. “We were not sure what to expect, but we had far more excellent and qualified applicants than we had awards, which was an inspiring reminder to me that today’s MBA students are truly seeking to make an impact and change the conversation on gender equality.”

The MBA fellows will be coached by consultants from Bain & Company and will have the opportunity to explore a wide range of projects, from developing strategies to recruit more women into MBA programs to creating podcasts or shooting a film series.

Another gender equality opportunity for Rotman’s MBAs this year is a new elective course called “Designing for Equality.” Launched this month, it’s a design-thinking course that will challenge students to solve complex gender challenges through projects and “live cases.”

Vanessa Iarocci, the course instructor and the institute’s executive-in-residence, explained the course this way: “Design thinking assumes that all problems are solvable but that traditional problem-solving methods don’t always work. For wicked problems, like gender equality, design thinking allows for a deeper understanding of the problem at hand and ‘rapid solution prototyping’ to involve those who experience the problem in the solution design.”

To learn more about what gender equality opportunities, events, and education the Rotman School offers, visit the school website.

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