On Friday, March 7, 2014, a group of enthusiastic, bright-eyed young ladies were treated to a panel discussion, a spirited performance by a member of musical group Audible Chocolate and a cocktail reception at Time Warner Inc. on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The occasion was to mark the New York Urban League’s 5th Annual Girls Empowerment Day.
“We started Girls Empowerment Day five years ago out of a desire to be able to introduce some of the wonderful women we have an opportunity to meet through the work of the Urban League to those that we serve. And we also wanted to give an opportunity not only to the young people whom we interact with in our program, but also some of the smaller nonprofits such as churches and youth groups who may not also have the level of access as an organization such as the NY Urban League, which has been in existence for so long. So we created Girls Empowerment Day as a way to engage young people and bring them together. They spend the day visiting corporations throughout the city from Black Enterprise magazine to the Yankees to NBC and find out what it’s like to have jobs in those particular companies and then they come together and close out the day in a powerful panel discussion with women and it’s just a wonderful opportunity for them and a way to give back to the community,” Arva Rice, president & CEO of NY Urban League, told The Network Journal.
The panel discussion themed, “Beautiful Me: Learning to Love Yourself”, moderated by ESSENCE magazine’s Editor-in-Chief Vanessa K. Bush, touched on a range of topics from honing one’s business acumen to finding sources of strength to dealing with others professionally and personally. Arva Rice; Miko Branch, co-founder, Miss Jessie's Products; and Devyn Abdullah, model and winner of Oxygen Network's "The Face," were on hand for the conversation.
Sponsored by Time Warner Cable, Time Warner and L’Oreal, the event was attended by approximately 500 girls aged 14-18 from across NYC’s five boroughs. The focus of Girls Empowerment Day 2014 was STEM: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. This year's attendees had the opportunity to meet and shadow executives from Google, L'Oreal, Microsoft, UPS, Interpublic Group (IPG), Time Warner Cable, NY Yankees and Harlem Hospital, among others.
(Click here to view photos from the event!)