It is 25 years since 189 countries adopted the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, a set of commitments to promote women's equality, at the historic UN conference in Beijing. Today, on International Women's Day, I had the pleasure of hosting three inspiring women for a panel discussion on Beijing plus 25. Where did we expect to be 25 years on, and where are we now.
I have been spending a lot of time recently reflecting on leadership qualities which I value, both as a leader and in my colleagues. This week, I have been reflecting on storytelling as a key skill: it is how leaders influence, how they reach people in ways that help them to understand, enable them to remember, and inspire them to act and change behaviours.
I have not in the past been much into personal anniversaries: they always felt rather over-indulgent to me. But, in the past few years, I have become a big fan of marking achievements and major milestones, and celebrating those things which I have invested time and energy into.
A final message before the festive break.
On 15 December, we formally launched the planning for UWCSEA’s 50th anniversary, which we celebrate next school year. We chose that date as it was the 49th anniversary of the day that former Prime Minister Mr Lee Kuan Yew opened the College.
On 3 December, we welcomed representatives from the Singapore Building and Construction Authority (BCA) to Dover to receive Green Mark Platinum Super Low Energy certifications for both our campuses. While we are honoured to be the only international school in Singapore to achieve this award, it is a powerful testimony to the long term vision, commitment and entrepreneurial spirit of our staff and students to our mission of building a sustainable future.
I will keep this blog short, but sweet - in recognition of the school break, and the many other things occupying your time and energies, including, I hope, the opportunity to spend more time with your family.
“May we live long and share the beauty of the moon together, even though we are hundreds of miles apart.”
Happy UWC Day to the UWCSEA community!
I see examples every day in our community of unity and purpose, of supportive collaborative partnerships, of our values in action, as we work to fulfill our mission for our students, past, present and future.
Last weekend, the UWCSEA Governors, Board advisers and College leadership teams met together for a dialogue on Reimagining Education. This was an opportunity for discussion on our College strategy with the new Chair, Madan Menon. All appropriately socially distanced, of course.