Central Penn students attend Business Women’s Forum

They brought home tips for professional and personal success

Young woman, ark blond hair, smiling

By Sara Walters

Knightly News Reporter


Gabryelle Breski and I attended the Business Women’s Forum at Messiah University on May 17.

In the morning, we networked with representatives from businesses displaying their information in the exhibit hall. Display booths included those from UPMC & UPMC Health Plan, Special Olympics, The Salvation Army and Members 1st.

We signed up for multiple volunteer opportunities that will benefit us personally and professionally.

We attended three sessions. The speakers gave us background about their jobs and advice for work and daily life.

The keynote speaker was Laurie Guest, with “The 10 Cent Decision: How Small Change Pays off Big.” Guest spoke about how she got to where she is today and how it was not always easy. Guest is an experienced speaker and leaves an impact on people she talks to.

Gabryelle “Abbee” Breski at the conference. Photo by Sara Walters
Our reporter at the Forum. Photo by Gabryelle Breski

I also sat in on Kristal Markle’s breakout session, “Owning Your Power with the Bossy Girl,” and this was very beneficial for me as I would like to own my own business. Markle is the president and founder of Bossy Girl Leadership, a business that teaches how to “own your power” and gain the confidence to be yourself.

Gabryelle’s first breakout session was with Marissa Bankert and Kristen Pucci, who talked about “Room for EVERY Woman in EVERY Workplace.” Gabryelle’s takeaway from this experience is you must know your worth and be confident.

“The Business Women’s Forum was an experience that women of all ages could benefit from,” Gabryelle said. “You didn’t have to already be in a field to understand the lessons being taught. You were acknowledged as a human being, possibly with life battles and possibly with some self-doubt, but they were teaching you how to battle through it and be confident in yourself.”

Central Penn President Linda Fedrizzi-Williams was a guest speaker at the conference, in a breakout session called “Women in the Workplace: Overcoming Challenges While Striving for Work-Life Integration.” Gabryelle and I attended this session, and I can say it was the session that had the most impact on me because I could relate the information directly to my life.

Fedrizzi-Williams talked about the difficulties of balancing work with family, activities and self-care. She shared what it was like trying to integrate work and personal life, to show other women that it is okay not to have a balance, but rather to integrate instead.

For information on the Business Women’s Forum and its offerings, visit the organization’s website here.

Comment or story idea? Contact KnightlyEditors@CentralPenn.Edu.

Edited by media-club co-adviser and blog editor Professor Michael Lear-Olimpi.