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Jumpstart your career, future businesswoman!

Networking. Experiential learning. Mentorship. That’s what young high school women immerse themselves in for three days when they sign up for the Calvin Young Women’s Business Institute.

Photo credit: Hailey Jansson

  • Author: Michal Rubingh
  • Published: October 1, 2019
  • Author: Michal Rubingh
  • Published: October 1, 2019

You don't have to wait for college to get your foot in the door of the business world.

High school students who participate in the Calvin Young Women’s Business Institute spend three days developing essential business skills. They get hands-on experience with real business projects. They sharpen their networking skills at professional dinners. They meet with a panel of leading businesswomen from the Grand Rapids area and talk to Calvin business professors.

Getting hands-on

“Young women who attend the Business Institute learn how to ask questions. They get to network with women from different industries," explained Jackie Van Dyk, a student who attended the Institute. “Going through the Institute convinced me to study business at Calvin. I loved that we took what we learned and applied it to real-world problems.”

One of the hands-on projects students tackle is the visitor experience at a world-renowned botanical garden. Students interview customers, identify patterns, and present creative solutions to the organization. It’s a window into the inner-workings of a business that you don’t want to miss.

Cultivating community

The Institute has cultivated a vibrant community of businesswomen on Calvin’s campus. Students who attend the Institute can join a student organization called the Women's Business Network. The Women's Business Network connects students with mentors who are women business professionals.

“Students who attend the Institute have a great path through Calvin. They come in known and connected to faculty and staff,” remarked Bob Eames. Eames serves as director of the Calvin Center for Innovation in Business.

Stephanie Boer is another Institute mentor. She loves how Calvin students are preparing to lead the next wave of businesswomen. “Four student leaders this year are all alumni of the Institute. It's been a joy for me to watch them work as a team.”

  • Author: Michal Rubingh
  • Published: October 1, 2019


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