John Molson Women Leadership Becomes CASA Subsidiary

CASA Board of Directors Approves After Year-Long Probation Period

The JMWL is a two-year-old group started by Concordia students in order to create bold and visible force for gender equality in the corporate world. Photo Courtesy Varvara Kameneva

The John Molson Women in Leadership group is officially a subsidiary of the Commerce and Administration Student Association.

The JMWL is a two-year-old group started by Concordia students in order to create bold and visible force for gender equality in the corporate world.

In order to become a CASA subsidiary, groups will apply to begin a probation period during which they must prove that they can be financially sustainable without any CASA funding. When the probation period is done, the group must reapply to the board of directors who can then approve or deny them.

“We’re really excited that we’re a ratified committee, and that JMWL is going to continue moving forward and bringing great events and value to our students,” said Elizabeth Pecoraro, the president of JMWL.

The benefits of being an official CASA subsidiary comes in the form of about $4,500 in funding, sharing an office with another committee, being promoted as a committee as well as a non-voting seat on CASA’s board of directors, which is their highest decision making body.

“It’s good to have, not only a club that promotes diversity, but diversity among our clubs to try to catch on different groups of students,” said outgoing CASA President Rudy Grow. “I think they’re doing a great job, and I’m excited to see what they can do.”

The JMWL applied to be on probation in March 2017, and since they’ve held many events, and participated at frosh. They also had $6,308 leftover from the sponsorships they received over the course of the year.

Being fiscally responsible is something Pecoraro wants to instill in the new executive team as they come in. She also wants to make sure that events are promoted to as many people as possible.

The Need for Progress

“I think one of the main things for us that we’ve realized is when you don’t have representation, no one’s going to follow in your footsteps,” JMWL’s Executive Vice-President Maria Patronidis. “I think a lot of women and girls, especially in high school or in college, they’re scared to be first movers if they don’t have a mentor or someone to give them advice.”

In 2015, a report funded by the government of British Columbia said that only 5.3 per cent of Canadian CEO’s are female.

Maclean’s published an article in February 2018 that said that women earn 74 cents on the dollar compared to men.

While still a relatively new group, Patronidis said that they’ve received a lot a great feedback from the Concordia community, but they still have to work advertising their committee.

“We meet a lot people at tabling who didn’t know Concordia had a women leadership committee,” said Patronidis. “I think overall there’s a general need for this kind of committee at JMSB, and throughout Concordia”

With the credibility of being a CASA subsidiary, the JMWL group said that they have lot of plans for future events, and collaborations with other groups on campus such as the Women in Business group.

“Especially with what’s happening right now in the world and in media, we’re relevant,” added Patronidis. “And I think we’re going to be relevant for a long time.”