APPLICATIONS NOW OPEN!
About The WOCA Leadership Through Mentorship Program
The Women of Color in the Arts (WOCA) Leadership Through Mentorship Program is an initiative which pairs emerging and mid-level administrators with more seasoned leaders with the explicit purpose of cultivating long-term professional investment and self-sustainability for women of color in the performing arts field. A first of its kind, it is significant to note that this program is designed for women of color, by women of color. This leadership training program is exclusively aimed at cultivating self-identified female leaders* of color, addressing their specific needs as often marginalized people in the field, while imparting tools to help participants foster a culture of equity in their respective work environments.
The expressed emphasis on mentorship and peer-to-peer learning supersedes many of the widely-held beliefs that formal academic learning and university-based professional training is the primary path to success and sustainability in the arts field. WOCA understands that learning happens in many forms, but it is often from within community that diverse voices and perspectives can emerge, engendering the most critical type of scholarship. WOCA also understands that the success of women in the workplace is largely predicated on the advocacy of women in the workplace so a focus on dismantling individual and institutional bias will also be addressed in the program. Most important, the Leadership through Mentorship Program is aimed at creating a sustainable community for arts leaders of color. While advanced scholarship will take place, the most critical intended outcome is cultivating a sense of community for both professional and personal development of the participant. At the heart of WOCA’s mission is continual community building in an effort to promote solidarity and wider visibility for women of color in the field.
*One of WOCA’s core philosophies is centered upon the premise that all women are leaders – no matter their station, title or position.