Applications open for the 2016 Changing Faces Women’s Leadership Seminar

03-350aDeadline: Thursday, February 25, 2016

U.S. Embassy, Bangkok invites Thai women entrepreneurs to apply to an exciting opportunity to travel to Hawaii on a 12-day professional training program.

When women are empowered to exercise leadership at all levels, it is not just in the service of women but also as a contribution to the betterment of society as a whole. In particular, women’s labor force participation and entrepreneurship are increasingly salient factors in the economic growth and societal transformation of the Asia Pacific. A gender gap, however, continues to exist as poor access to training, networks, role models, and information depress the economic participation, particularly the entrepreneurship, of women throughout the Asia Pacific region. Launched in 2002, the Changing Faces Seminar provides an annual opportunity innovative women entrepreneurs from the Asia Pacific region to enhance their entrepreneurial capacity and leadership skills as well as experientially explore entrepreneurship, leadership, and community engagement in a multicultural and economically diverse environment. In addition, the Changing Faces Seminar aims to cultivate economic, professional, and social ties among Asia Pacific women entrepreneurs for the mutual benefit of the participants and their local communities. Designed for mid-career, business and social entrepreneur women from Asia, the Pacific Islands, and the United States, the Changing Faces Seminar contributes to economic growth and job creation of the Asia Pacific region. The Changing Faces Seminar is recognized as a capacity building model for women entrepreneurs in the academic text titled, Women and Leadership Around the World, and was featured as such at the International Leadership Association’s conference, “Advancing Women in Leadership,” in June 2015.

Seminar Information:

The 2016 Changing Faces Women’s Leadership Seminar, “Women as Innovators and Entrepreneurs,” will focus on the important role that innovation and entrepreneurship play in contributing to economic growth, job creation, and strengthening communities. During this 12-day professional training, dialogue and travel program, participants engage in a series of workshops focused on leadership and entrepreneurship that are facilitated by a noted women’s leadership trainer and the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Shidler College of Business. Participants also expand their knowledge of entrepreneurship, economic growth, leadership, and community building through carefully selected field visits and meetings with experts, practitioners, business owners, and policymakers in Hawaii. Participants are individually matched with local women leaders in a Host Mentor program and, in return, Changing Faces participants act as mentors for a select group of high school students from a local all-girls school in a Next Generation Service Project. The Changing Faces Seminar also provides training and consultative sessions to help participants develop and actualize a concrete Action Plan for the betterment of their business or their community. Finally, Changing Faces women serve as panelist, moderators and attendees at the publicly ticketed #galswithLEI, a purposeful, collaborative, and dynamic forum.


Honolulu and Kona, Hawaii


June 19 – July 2, 2016


Who Can Apply:

The Changing Faces Seminar targets female business owners and social entrepreneurs who have demonstrated leadership and ability to affect change and influence others in their communities. Innovative entrepreneurs, business managers, government and industry policymakers, and civil society leaders with at least seven years of work experience and who play a leadership role in their community are eligible to apply. Innovators may generally be defined as those who have created an original idea or product or are recognized for their ability to improve upon an original idea or system. Applicants must have the ability to communicate in English in a professional setting. Preference is given to candidates with limited opportunities for international exchange and professional development. A phone interview may be conducted with finalists.  Apply here


The 2016 Changing Faces Women’s Leadership Seminar is funded by the East-West Center with entrepreneurial training provided by Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.  EWC will fund eight women from the Asia Pacific region, defined here as:  the United States, Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Brunei, Cambodia, China, East Timor, Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kiribati, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nauru, Nepal, New Zealand, Niue, Pakistan, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Philippines, Samoa, Singapore, Solomon Islands, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Tuvalu, Vanuatu, Tonga, and Vietnam. EWC funding covers lodging and meals in Honolulu and Kona, local ground transportation, interisland airfare to Hawaii Island (Big Island), and other programmatic costs.  If a Thai women entrepreneur is chosen as one of the eight, the U.S. Embassy will cover the roundtrip airfare to and from Honolulu.

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