On Being a Woman at Sloan and Beyond

Throughout the past year, I’ve been part of Sloan Women in Management’s Breaking the Mold initiative, which sought to educate members of the MIT community about unconscious bias. I found the conversations shared over a series of workshops, speaker events, and a full-day conference to be both inspiring and eye-opening. You can learn more about the initiative here.

With some distance from Cambridge, I’ve been reminded just how important those kinds of conversations are, particularly at this time. I spent my career prior to Sloan in the tech industry and plan on returning following graduation, albeit in a different function. It’s been well-documented over the past several years that the tech sector faces some significant issues around diversity. I found this recent infographic particularly enlightening. I’ve been fortunate to have had a number of fantastic role models, mentors, and managers, but I can’t help but feel a bit disheartened by these statistics. And this challenge pervades industries far beyond tech.

While I know these numbers won’t change overnight, I strongly believe that current and future leaders have an obligation to challenge the status quo. That’s why I’m excited about being at Sloan right now — and why I wanted to co-lead Sloan Women in Management (SWIM) during the upcoming school year. The SWIM leadership team is currently working on a rather ambitious agenda of activities designed to help women better prepare for success in business. In particular, we’re planning student-alumni networking events, breakfast series with Boston business leaders, industry-specific panels, interview preparation, and of course – a continuation of the discussion started with Breaking the Mold. Our hope is that by helping women build relationships and confidence, they’ll be well positioned to overcome the implicit biases that exist in the workplace today.

For any prospective students interested in gaining a better grasp on life as a woman at Sloan, I’d highly recommend checking out the upcoming Women’s Week, hosted by Admissions. There are panels throughout the US as well as a Google Hangout to help you learn more. More information on SWIM can be found here.  I’ll be at the event in San Francisco on August 6th, if you plan on joining!

As I wrap up the last few weeks of my internship, I’m very much looking forward to returning to the challenging classrooms and warm community at Sloan. I know there is much to be done but I can’t wait to be surrounded by the vibrant, passionate, and intelligent classmates who push me to consider things differently and be better.

Hailey Crowel

Hailey is a member of the MIT Sloan MBA class of 2016 and a Co-President for Sloan Women in Management (SWIM). Prior to joining Sloan, Hailey spent more than four years at Google in Sydney and San Francisco as an analyst, helping some of the world’s largest travel brands develop digital marketing strategies. Before that, she worked in in business development at the Los Angeles Times, and conducted research in Japan as part of the Fulbright program. Hailey received a B.A. in English & Comparative Literary Studies from Occidental College. She plans to return to the tech industry following graduation from Sloan.

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1 Comment

  1. Eye opening infographic, thanks for sharing. Looking forward to getting involved in the Breaking the Mold initiative this year.

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