Event Summary: International Women’s Day

On March 8, we celebrated International Women’s Day! In collaboration with Lof we organised our annual International Women’s Day Event. It was an evening full of valuable insights.

First, Topfem’s chairwoman Nathalie Sanglier and Lof’s chairwoman Judith Meeng gave us a warm welcome. It was so inspiring to hear Judith tell us about her life and career. She also gave us some interesting information about Lof. She further emphasized that we are the future and that is why it is so important for experienced women at the top to share the lessons they have learned with the younger generation through storytelling.

After that empowering opening, the floor was given to professor Ms. Clementine Breedveld-de Voogd. She shared with us her story and updated us about the current situation of women at the top in the field of academics. Although we aren’t there yet, hearing about the efforts made to make things better for women gave us such a huge boost. Together we can make a change!

Next, the floor was given to Jeanine van der Vlist, Managing Director Nederland at Eurofiber and 2017 CEO of the year. As a warm-up, she and the audience were presented with several statements. After discussing these statements, she guided us through her life and career by sharing her personal story and the lessons she has learned. Jeanine believes that men and women aren’t equivalents, but they are of equal value; such interesting food for thought. Her inspiring talk ended with three lessons learned that she wanted to share with us:

1. Build your network. Also, try to make it a mixed network, not only women but also men who could help you.
2. Think in changes and possibilities. There may be 1000 reasons why you can’t do something, but there are even more reasons why you can do it.
3. Believe in yourself and believe in your own strength.

After the empowering speeches of several speakers, we then moved to City Hall Leiden to enjoy networking drinks and bites.