From Left, Mary Magdalene Anyansi (Alumna), Professor Noel D’Allacco, Blanca Martinez (Student), Professor Dr. Grace Bonanno, Nelcol Philip (Alumna)

From Left, Mary Magdalene Anyansi (Alumna), Professor Noel D’Allacco, Blanca Martinez (Student), Professor Dr. Grace Bonanno, Nelcol Philip (Alumna)

As part of the Women’s History Month celebration, The College of Westchester (CW) Student Activities Committee hosted a panel to discuss the role of women in business. The panel discussion, moderated by CW student Blanca Martinez, included CW alumni Nelcol Philip, controller, Cresa, NYC and Mary Magdalene Anyansi, project manager, travel and entertainment at a major NYC mass media company, as well as CW professors Noel D’Allacco and Dr. Grace Bonanno.

All panelists shared personal experiences and the challenges they faced when entering the work force.

“Age was an issue when I started my business (OperationProm) at 21. It was obvious some contacts did not immediately take me seriously,” said Prof. Noel D’Allacco.

On the other hand, being a woman and playing a leadership role has been a learning process for alumna Mary Magdalene Anyansi,“I manage a group of 18 people and 12 are men. I encourage a creative environment where everyone has a voice.”

In corporate America women still have a long way to go to achieve gender parity, especially in executive positions. Alumna Nelcol Philip offered some advice to female students in the audience, “Just be humble, resilient, and work very hard. Those abilities will set you aside in the corporate world.”

Those words were backed up by Prof. Bonanno and Mary Magdalene who empower women to pursue their dreams, “as the phrase goes, choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life,” said Prof. Bonanno. Mary Magdalene added, “Every woman has a place in corporate America and it is not in the back of the room.”

The Women’s History Month traces its beginnings to the first International Women’s Day in 1911. Since 1981, the Women’s History Month is an annual declared month that highlights the contributions of women to events in history and contemporary society. The purpose of the Women’s History Month is to recognize the achievements of women in all facets of life such as science, business, government, literature, art, sports, and medicine, among others.