Posts Tagged ‘women’

USC Own It Conference 2016

laelene Posted in mba,Tags: , , , , , , ,

This Saturday, I spent the day on campus at the inaugural USC Own It conference. It’s targeted more towards undergrads, but was still a good opportunity to meet women.

view of crescent moon in blue sky with trees

The moon was still out when I arrived! The trees were also shedding like crazy (perhaps there was a squirrel?).

line of ladies getting breakfast before usc own it 2016 conference

piles of tote bags for attendees of usc own it 2016 conference

Lots of goodies!

glowing lights inside usc bovard auditorium executive panelists at usc own it 2016 conference


The morning panels were women in high leadership positions and then media/news.

sign post guiding attendees to breakout rooms for usc own it 2016 conference

We split for breakout sessions before and after lunch. I went to both tech ones.

lunch trucks at usc own it 2016 conference

Lunch time!

microsoft tent at usc own it 2016 conference

A little bit of networking at lunch, with the lovely folks at Microsoft and Bing.

giant "we own it because" board with empowering statements posing with art wall

using a power pose in front of art wall

Power pose time. 🙂
(If you’re not familiar, look up Amy Cuddy’s TED Talk.)

women entrepreneur panel at usc own it 2016 conference

The afternoon panels were women in tech and then entrepreneurs.

Voices hushed, voices crushed

laelene Posted in general blog,Tags: , , ,

There’s an epidemic out there. It’s a diseased thought, the idea that women shouldn’t speak up.

Why shouldn’t we express ourselves freely? Why shouldn’t we stand up for ourselves?

From a young age, we are taught that showing so much emotion is weakness. That complaining is really just whining. That saying something to defend ourselves is sassy or downright b****y. That a strong woman is not “feminine” (enough). We’re attacked for being too loud, too proud. For doing what we want, for being ourselves, for daring to be ourselves. We’re told not to rock the boat – “don’t create a scene.”

Really? Pointing out injustices is creating a scene? No wonder the majority of us endure rape, domestic violence, sexual harassment, and other abuses. Heaven forbid we “make a scene” over it. It’s hard for me to believe that in this day and age, we are still plagued with these issues. We keep our voices hushed so we don’t bring that negative attention to us. Who wants to be labeled a whiny b****?

When I bring up an issue that is bothering me, it should not be perceived as petulant. When I share I’m struggling with something, I should not be judged as weak. When I cry it out, I should not be any less respected. I had a friend suggest that bringing up grievances is showing your weaknesses. Just grin and bear it, right? But to me, doing so in a respectful manner is a show of strength. Strength is not pushing the world away and trying to go it alone. Strength is standing up for yourself and getting help doing that if you need it (and you probably will, if the struggle is meaningful and worth it).

And so it goes, this perpetuation of a preposterous idea. Women constantly find themselves put down and judged harshly for doing the very things men are praised for. “Way to stand up for yourself,” they cheer him on! “Why be such a drama queen?” they ask her. How in the world are we supposed to achieve equality with this sort of mentality standing in the way? How will women be respected when society continues to a demure beauty and men continue to objectify them? Just because “that’s the way things are” doesn’t mean it’s right, doesn’t make it acceptable.

This is how our voices get crushed. It’s no wonder we barely speak.


(So thank you, blog, for giving me a bit of my voice back.)

Outward appearances

laelene Posted in general blog,Tags: , , , , , , ,

I often forget I am an Asian-American woman. Does it affect how people perceive my abilities? I’m starting to wonder.

For the most part, I go about my days without a second thought to differences in gender, ethnicity, age, or other factors. Everyone I work with is a different personality type in my mind, but I don’t consciously associate that with any other qualities. And likewise, I don’t think they treat me any specific way because I’m female or Asian. But then I read books about the Asian-American experience (particularly Asian-American women) and it gets me thinking if the way I’m treated is not just about my personality and behavior, but also largely affected by my appearance.

happy girl smiling taking a selfie with snow falling around her

Just a happy-go-lucky gal who loves the simple things.

Do I not get the respect I thought I would because of my gender, ethnicity, or age? Or do I not because I’m silly and goof off so people don’t always take me seriously? Do certain people pay me a little more attention because of how I look or do they just like my bubbly excitement over little things? Would I even be able to parse out that information? Does it ultimately matter? At the moment, it does because it’s creating a psychological barrier for me. I suddenly lost confidence in myself and my abilities and the doubt I have is related to my gender and ethnicity. If I were a man, would it be different? Would I have more confidence in myself even as I failed? If I weren’t Asian, would it be easier to express myself and stand up for my ideas?

I’m working to set myself up for success again and focus on attainable goals. It’s all too easy to be harsh on myself and judge everything I do as not good enough.

Pampered again

laelene Posted in photo blog,Tags: , , , , ,

My second time around at Pamper Me Fabulous brought about a heftier gift bag, a taste of the cuisine, and sweet new products. What I did miss were the free services, which I signed up for but came too late to get a chance before the day was over.

room full of gift bags given to attendees of pamper me fabulous

My first order of business was to get a swag bag full of goodies!

expert corner stage at pamper me fabulous with shirtless guys giving out hats

Then I wandered around and attended this panel where shirtless guys gave away hats.

ladies sitting on hillside facing ocean view at terranea during pamper me fabulous event

For lunch I went to enjoy the view like these ladies.

panoramic view of the pacific ocean from terranea resort

It’s a sweeping view up here.

view of rocky beach and red cliffs from terranea resort

What glorious cliffs.

view of pamper me fabulous bazaar area in ballroom of terranea resort

Back to the hubbub of the bazaar!

view of terranea resort and ocean from up the hill

By mid-afternoon I was worn and ready to go. You get a nice view leaving Terranea Resort.

a peek at items included in the pamper me fabulous gift bag given to attendees this year

My baggie was brimming with goodies.

sign showing yield to golfers at terranea resort

Haha, what a golfing community it must be.

small reusable bamboo boat-like tray bowl used for salad at terranea resort

After gobbling down my salad, I noticed the bowl thing wasn’t paper! So of course I had to take it home with me. 😛

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