Andrew Herring Andrew Herring

UOW’s Academic Women’s Leadership Program named Australia’s best

National accolades for UOW gender equity initiative

A University of Wollongong (UOW) initiative to help female academics move into leadership positions has been named as Australia’s Best Women in Leadership Development Program. 

UOW’s Leadership Program for Senior Academic Women (LPSAW) received the accolade at the Australian Institute of Training and Development’s 2018 National Training Excellence Awards.

This award is presented to the organisation demonstrating best practices in developing and delivering an effective leadership development program targeted to women aspiring to be leaders or who are in executive level positions.

The certificate and trophy were presented to UOW staff responsible for the program, as well as previous participants, at an evening ceremony in Sydney’s Darling Harbour on Friday 23 November, 2018.

Established in 2016 as a key initiative under the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) Pilot, the LPSAW Program was designed to address an identified gap in the ongoing support UOW provided to female academics aspiring to move into leadership roles.

The 10-month program takes a ‘strengths and values’ approach encompassing professional development and career planning.

It supports women academics to gain personal insights into their leadership values, motivations and skills, enabling them to more effectively choose leadership roles to focus on pursuing now and in the future.

The program has already achieved results, with 74 per cent of participants assuming a leadership role since commencing the program and 21 per cent successful in applying for senior leadership positions.

Across the institution, the program has contributed to a nine per cent increase in female representation in senior academic leadership roles, such as Associate Deans or Deputy Directors.

Program coordinator and UOW’s Manager Professional and Organisational Development Services, Lorraine Denny, said the team was very pleased to win the award over entries from Cbus with Mercer Consulting and the Royal Australian Navy.

“The judges were impressed by the program’s impact considering the limited resources and tight time constraints for delivery, and because it was developed entirely in-house.

“Establishing and developing this program has been a remarkable team effort. I want to acknowledge the good work of all the academic and professional development staff involved,” Lorraine said.

The program is continuing in 2018 and into 2019, with at least 40 women putting themselves forward as new participants. The career progress of program alumni are also being tracked to assess its long term impact.


Image caption: Pictured receiving the Australian Institute of Training and Development’s award for Best Women in Leadership Development Program for UOW are (from left): Lisa Ucles, Lorraine Denny, Senior Professor Sharon Robinson, Associate Professor Grace McCarthy and Associate Professor Melanie Randle.

Posted in Education
Tagged: Wollongong