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Women's Leadership Program

Empowering Women to Lead

The Women's Leadership Program enables women to develop skills and strategies for self-advocacy and leadership advancement. Powered by the expertise of Bentley’s Gloria Cordes Larson Center for Women and Business, participants gain an understanding of the value and impact of gender equity, enhance key communications competencies, and become aware of their unique strengths as authentic leaders and team players — essentials that build confidence and prepare women to reach higher.

Frequently Asked Questions

What You Need to Know

WLP Leaders brainstorm how they can be allies when addressing bias

The Program

  • A four-year, selective co-curricular program for undergraduate women.
  • Each year of the program, WLP Leaders participate in program workshops and events that build awareness and foster confidence.
  • Includes a significant, annual financial award of $10,000 per year applied toward tuition at Bentley — totaling $40,000 during the four-year undergraduate experience. 
  • Apply as part of the Bentley first-year, undergraduate admissions process.

Program Structure

How to Apply

The Application Process

  • To apply, students must complete two additional questions for Bentley University on the Common Application. The application is reviewed by the Admission Committee during the application decision process. 
  • Selection is based on leadership experience and potential demonstrated in the student's Bentley application and is identified through essays, recommendations and/or extracurricular activities.
  • This four-year program is open to first-year applicants only and decisions are announced as part of the regular decision process.
WLP Leaders ready to greet prospective students at open house
Sara Buitrago Montoya ’22
When I was deciding where to go, the opportunity to be part of the Women’s Leadership Program at Bentley was a defining point. I was not wrong in thinking that this program would give me the tools to have a strong voice and be a great leader. Every workshop or social has helped me be more confident and strong.
Sara Buitrago Montoya ’22
WLP Leader

A Path to Leadership

Liberty Mutual Logo with Caption Exploring the Landscape

WLP Leaders begin the program by gaining awareness of current social and workplace diversity issues and developing a broader understanding of leadership. This provides a foundation, which students build upon over the course of the program. Students also begin to gain real-world perspectives and make meaningful connections through meetings with corporate mentors and corporate visits that continue throughout their experience.

Building Competence and Confidence

During each year of the program, WLP Leaders have the opportunity to participate in workshops, roundtables, and corporate events that explore critical gender and workplace equity issues on a deeper level and develop effective leadership communications skills. Students learn strategies to understand and address issues such as unconscious bias, the gender confidence gap, and the value of male allies. They work on developing effective negotiation and presentation skills, gain creative confidence, and learn how to foster mentors and sponsors. The result is a self-advocacy tool-kit that advances their leadership potential.

Developing Authentic Leadership

WLP Leaders focus on what it means to be authentic, inclusive, and informed leaders. They develop an understanding of authentic leadership and followership and explore their own personal values and authentic behaviors. Through a strengths-based assessment and other self-awareness tools, students gain insight and embrace their authentic selves. This provides the basis for each student to develop a unique value proposition as a leader and a personal vision for leadership. A leadership experience/case study enables students to deepen their understanding and confidence as authentic leaders.

Preparing to Launch

When they graduate, WLP Leaders are able to recognize, impact, and benefit from an inclusive workplace culture. Students will have a network of professionals, faculty, and peers who will be important resources in advancing the students’ professional and educational careers. The program culminates with WLP Leader presentations in which students synthesize their learning on workplace diversity and inclusive leadership and apply it to a leadership experience/case study.


Program Skills and Competencies

Two CWB Leaders engage in a negotiation

WLP Leaders are collaborative relationship builders who can communicate with influence. Skills development focus is on:

  • Authentic leadership
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Executive presence
  • Speaking up and being heard
  • Conflict management and negotiation
  • Networking
  • Collaboration and teamwork
CWB Leaders share stories during a discussion on confidence

WLP Leaders understand and articulate strategies for self-advocacy that address bias, maximize opportunity, and advance leadership potential. Diversity and inclusion topics include:

  • The status of gender equity in the workplace
  • The effect of unconscious bias and micro-inequities
  • Closing the gender confidence gap
  • Self-advocacy tools to foster inclusion
  • Men as allies in creating gender equity
  • The importance of mentorship, sponsorship, and networking
  • Addressing sexual harassment
  • Managing work/life balance
Rashmi Rajesh ’22 WLP Leader and Managerial Economics Major
As a woman in business, the Women’s Leadership Program will not only equip you with the skills to break glass ceilings, but also teach you how to identify your strengths and use them to advance yourself as a business professional.
Rashmi Rajesh ’22
WLP Leader and Managerial Economics Major