The ladies of the North Shore are really coming together to support one another in so many ways, which is awesome to see and be part of. With that said we had the opportunity to speak with Angela Jiang and Michelle Zhen from the Young Women in Business (YWiB) Capilano chapter to get to know them and the organization better for our readers. They have been ramping up their social media coverage of each new member of the group and it’s really magnifying the positive effects supporting very fast growth. Congratulations to all of the membrs of YWiB Capilano.
How did Young Women in Business get started and what do you like about operating the Capilano chapter?
Young Women in Business (YWiB) is a national organization that started back in 2008 at UBC, where students noticed a lack of resources available for young women in the workplace. YWiB has both city and university chapters all across Canada – city chapters serve women stepping into the workforce and university chapters serve university students. In 2017, my best friend Michelle and I were in our second year at Capilano University and noticed a lack of mentorship opportunities for students. We had strong women mentors growing up who shaped a lot of who we are today, and wanted to bring the same opportunities to Capilano students. Working together with the national YWiB organization, we co-founded the Capilano chapter. With YWiB Capilano now in its third year, we have seen incredible growth – our executive team has tripled since our first year! While operating the chapter requires a lot of time, seeing the growth of both our executive team and of our event attendees makes everything we do worth it.
What inspires you day to day to do what you do in the community?
We are big believers in paying it forward. Our mentor figures – they have inspired us so much and helped us grow in immense ways. Michelle and I have been extremely fortunate to have mentors in our lives, and we hope to one day impact others as our mentors had for us.
If some of our readers are local ladies who are entrepreneurs how can they join your organization?
If they are a student, they can attend any of our events or join our team! We organize networking events, workshops, and socials throughout the year. If they are in the workforce and are interested in giving back, we would love to have them speak or come out to our networking events. There is also the YWiB Vancouver chapter that hosts a variety of events and mentorship programs are available.
What are your goals here in North Vancouver for 2020 in terms of growth and outreach?
Our goals in North Vancouver are to increase attendance to our events and to raise awareness about our club. We want to see more students getting involved at school and out there pursuing their passions, and aim to do this by organizing more educational events.
In your spare time outside of running YWiB Capilano what do you do for activities?
Angela: I love thrifting and sewing! I’m big on sustainability and am trying to reduce my carbon footprint fashion wise this year.
Michelle: I love to read! My favourite book to date has been Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead.
Is there anything else you might want our readers to know about you or Young Women in Business?
We are inclusive and welcome all genders and industries to our chapter! We believe that anybody can benefit from learning important soft skills such as public speaking and networking. There are chapters all over the Lower Mainland that people can join in and give back or learn from us.