The Women’s Network, dedicated to redefining female ambition, opens American University Chapter
The national club will begin operations on campus in the fall
With a mission to expand to an additional 100 campus chapters, The Women’s Network (TWN) recently launched a chapter at American University slated to begin in the fall.
Along with creating a network to connect women to industry professionals, TWN also works to redefine ambition.
The network sees a negative connotation around the word “ambition,” often used only to describe women, and they break that down through the podcast “Redefining Ambition.”
“I have heard many people describe women as ‘ambitious,’ and often it has this demeaning, condescending undertone,” TWN founder Jamie Vinick said. “And in TWN, we’re seeking to upend that notion and highlight that it’s an incredible thing to be ambitious, to have drive, to possess really tremendous aspirations and goals in life.”
TWN was started by Vinick during her college years at Syracuse University. Vinick, the founder and president, wanted more dialogue around the struggles women often encounter in obtaining leadership roles in certain industries. Years later, TWN strives to create a professional network that also embodies a supportive community.
“The people I’ve met in this network are so incredible and they’re so inspiring,” said Lara Janosz, a TWN intern and University of Michigan chapter member. “They want to help you succeed in your careers and your interests. And it’s something that’s incredibly valuable and it shows the power of the network.”
On campus, AU women will have the opportunity to become a part of the network through the new chapter.
“AU women on campus will have the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with each other and expand their personal network both on campus and out around the country,” Vinick said. “They will have really candid dialogue about things related to gender in the workplace, building confidence, combating imposter syndrome, and negotiating your salary.”
TWN wants to redefine the term ambition, specifically around the AU campus culture. The organization defines ambition as reaching the pinnacle of one’s dreams, in both a professional and personal capacity.
“There is so much value in authentically building really meaningful relationships at this stage in life. So the message I would have is join TWN, get ready to learn a ton, to meet a lot of new people, to explore interesting different career paths, to expand upon your knowledge of what it means to even be successful in the workplace, everyone defines that differently.”
As women at AU begin to join the new chapter, TWN hopes they can create a supportive network that can extend past the college years.
“Our vision is to build a powerhouse of a network, so powerful you’ll feel obligated to reach outside the network,” Vinick said. “So this expands just beyond your college years, this is hopefully an organization that all of our members will be a part of throughout their lives.”