CWU women return from GNAC summit

Adam Whitlock/GNAC

Adam Whitlock/GNAC

Rachel Greve, Staff Reporter

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The GNAC hosted the third Women in Sports Career Seminar this past weekend in Portland, Oregon.

The seminar was hosted at the Moda Center, where 125 high school and college age women came together to meet professional women working in the sports industry as coaches, athletic directors and journalists.

Invited professionals included: Anne Peterson from the Associated Press, Ngozi Monu the Communications Coordinator from Adidas and Sonja Robinson from the NCAA head office. All of these women influence and inspire young women who aspire to work in the sports industry.

“The GNAC Women in Sports Career Seminar is a great way for females to learn more about the various careers in sports. The first step to increasing the number of females working in the field of sports is to expose them to the possibilities that are available and help them understand [the] next steps to pursuing a career,” GNAC Associate Commissioner Bridget Johnson Tetteh said.

“This seminar does both by allowing attendees to hear firsthand from professionals about what they do and how they got there,” Tetteh said.

Among the attendees were a handful of CWU students, including graduate student Megan Thompson and junior soccer player forward Whitney Lowe. Thompson is in the process of earning her M.S in athletic administration and hopes that, after attending this seminar, she will have connections that will help her pursue a career in becoming an assistant director of marketing in college sports one day.

“The most influential thing I took away was the path that you start in, is not always the path you will end up in. Not just one person said that, it was what everyone said as whole and was a common theme,” Thompson said.

The conference began with keynote speaker Diana Cutaia, founder of Coaching Peace Consulting. Cutaia talked about what it means for a woman to show up physically, and how much more important it is to show up ready to listen, learn, be engaged and be the best you can be in a male dominated industry.

My favorite part was “the networking and getting to know people’s careers and why they love their job and what they do,” Lowe said.

Cutaia made a point to tell each woman in the room that with hard work and determination, no matter their education or degree level, she too could be the founder of a coaching firm or be the next Olympic beat reporter . Other panelists from the seminar agreed; one panelist even pointed out that she earned her degree in math and science and is now working in an administration position with athletics at Oregon State University.

One attendee even admitted to not knowing what she wanted to do in her future. She now knows that whatever she may decide to do in life she has the supports of everyone she connected with and that she wants to spend whatever she ends up doing in the world of sports.

After the event, attendees were granted admission into the Trail Blazers vs. Utah Jazz NBA basketball game where they spent more time to make connections that will hopefully help them get to where they want to go in life.

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CWU women return from GNAC summit