For the past six years the Young Women in Business chapter at Simon Fraser University has hosted an annual International Women’s Day Conference. The event focuses on a day-long networking experience involving workshops and speakers from a variety of industries. It provided great opportunities for delegates to grow their professional network and learn valuable skills. Although the conference has always been a great success, this year, our team made the decision to host a gala. The idea opened up new doors and possibilities, while maintaining the goals that the conference had. This change was new and exciting for YWiB SFU, as it brought a different element and atmosphere to our pillar event. The evening began with the beautiful Chloe Farrell, a Vancouver-based singer, whose voice filled the room with a sweet charm. The host for the evening was the Digital Marketing Associate for Market One Media Group, Joscelyn Tan, who graciously returned to YWiB SFU for the evening, as the former-president. Throughout the night, delegates were able to purchase raffle tickets for a chance to win some of the amazing prizes, from Chanel perfume to a one night stay at the Pinnacle Hotel Harbourfront. The proceeds from the raffle were donated directly to Beauty Night Society, the featured charity of the evening. There was also a photo wall available during the night, which was beautifully set up and run by Butter Studios Photography.
Our keynote speaker, Lori Joyce, Founder and CEO of Betterwith Foods Inc., shared her story, answered questions, and she enlightened us all with her expertise and knowledge. The evening also consisted of a panel of strong women from different industries, which was facilitated by Samantha Sito, Writer and YouTuber of SamSito TV. The panel included Nohémie Mawaka, Creative Strategist at Global Health; Shannon Bosa, Proprietor of Glowbal Group; Shannon Juzenas, Software Engineer at Google Inc.; and Zoya Jiwa, Founder of As We Are. They each shared their experiences, and gave inspiring advice about being a female in the workplace.
The theme of the gala was to “Be Limitless”, and it was encouraged throughout the event. The speakers also emphasized this theme, as this idea was, and remains, important to their success. Amongst the many words of wisdom shared by our panelists, there were a few quotes that encompassed the essence of the event. Shannon Juzenas said that “Other people’s success doesn’t undervalue you or your lack of success.” Don’t let anything stand in the way of being limitless. Taking care of yourself also goes hand-in-hand with this concept, so that you can be the best version of yourself. “Self-care is necessary to keep doing the work that is dear to your heart,” Zoya said. The goal was to help delegates find their niche and cultivate their success.
The entire evening was incredible and filled with laughter, fun, and elegance!
“My favourite part of the event would have to be the split second that I took a step back, looked around the room, and saw the excitement and passion in some of our attendees' eyes as our panelists spoke. Those subtle cues of joy made organizing this event worthwhile for me.”
--Crystal Huang, IWD Gala Speaker Coordinator
“My favorite part of the event was seeing the connections being made - I loved seeing attendees asking questions, interacting with speakers and becoming inspired to build their networks of amazing women.”
--Sydney Juzenas, IWD Gala Logistics Coordinator
Our Gracious Sponsors
Platinum Level Sponsor:
Beedie School of Business
Silver Level Sponsors:
Simon Fraser Student Society
Willow Stream Spa at Fairmont Vancouver
Maurelle Calligraphy and Design Studio
Pinnacle Hotel Vancouver Harbourfront
Made in Print
Butter Studios Photography
Lola’s Churro Bar
World Duty Free Group