Professor Leah Flack, PhD
IWL Co-Director —
Professor of English, College of Arts & Sciences
Leah Flack, PhD, is a Professor of English, in the College of Arts & Sciences, who has published two books and several articles emerging from her interest in the ways language and storytelling have facilitated powerful acts of self-expression and social rebellion in a global context, from the ancient world through the #metoo movement. The recipient of Marquette’s Raynor Award for Teaching Excellence, she is passionate about finding new ways to help students discover the value and joy of stories, including their own stories. A researcher in transnational modernism, she enjoys teaching classes on Russian and Irish literature, the epic tradition, and modern literature. She is a participant in the Ignatian Colleagues Program run by the AJCU to educate and immerse leaders from American Jesuit universities in the traditions and values of Jesuit and Catholic higher education. Dr. Flack serves as the faculty director for the campus chapter of the global nonprofit Narrative 4, where she serves on the National University Advisory Board. Prior to joining IWL, she was the chair of the English Department.
Professor Melissa Shew, PhD
IWL Co-Director —
Melissa Shew, PhD, was Teaching Associate Professor of Philosophy, in the College of Arts & Sciences, and the Senior Faculty Fellow (Assistant Director) of the Center for Teaching and Learning at Marquette. She tought a wide range of classes in Philosophy, Honors, and Business and has a wide range of scholarly interests, from ancient Greek philosophy to our contemporary world. Recently, she edited and published Philosophy for Girls (OUP 2020) and is working on a related digital scholarship project, called The Persephone Project. She also recently gave a TEDx Talk, "Women and Intellectual Empowerment” (June 2021), to articulate ways that we can amplify, advocate for, and adore younger women and nonbinary people--and why it’s worth doing so. Another book project, On the Vocation of the Educator in This Moment, is coming out in November 2021 in association with MU Press. It features 24 chapters, most of which are written by women across campus from different departments. The book is a response to three crises of our time: the pandemic, racial injustice, and challenges in higher education. Dr. Shew also served in a variety of ways at Marquette, from the Participating Faculty Task Force to the CfAH, Honors, and the Ignatian Year. She most loves building new projects with others.
Karalee Surface, Ph.D.
IWL Leadership Development Coordinator — Sept. 2021–May 2023
Karalee Surface, Ph.D., has been with Marquette since 2007 when she started her MA in History. Her doctoral research, conducted under the direction of Dr. Tom Jablonsky, focused on the life-changing impact of disabling injuries incurred in the workplace at the turn of the 20th century. Since completing her doctorate in 2015, she has continued serving Marquette in a variety of roles, including as a project assistant with the Klingler College of Arts & Sciences Internship Office, and most recently she spent four years as an academic advisor with the University Honors Program. In addition to her administrative work, she has served as an adjunct instructor, collaborating with faculty across campus to develop courses on disability, innovation, and difference-makers for the Marquette Core Curriculum’s Methods of Inquiry course.
Karalee joined the IWL team as Coordinator for the Women’s Innovation Network and helped develop it into more high-impact programming that inspires innovation, celebrates and supports leadership, and forges a strong sense of community among Marquette’s female, nonbinary, and underrepresented students as the IWL Leadership Development Coordinator.
Check out Karalee's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Events Intern — May 2022–May 2023
Makayla McIntyre graduated with a major in Communication Studies and minor in Health Communication with an emphasis on Leadership. With a passion for connecting people and a growing repertoire in strategic marketing, Makayla worked as Marquette's AHPRC Communications Intern for two years and looks forward to being Marquette's E-Lead Narratives & Marketing Intern this upcoming academic year. As an active student leader in the campus ministry Cru at Marquette, Makayla was dedicated to empowering women in ministry settings and beyond. She enjoyed promoting female student and faculty research, networking, and leadership development as the IWL's Events Intern her senior year at Marquette.
Check out Makayla's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
"Courageous Collaborations" Conference Event Coordinator — March 2023
Madaline McCarthy's mother fled Laos during the Vietnam War with her family and was relocated here to the United States. Madaline is the first generation in her family that has received an Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and the first to attend Graduate school. It is Madaline's desire to seek further education and when she completes her DE MSN, Madaline plans to obtain her DNP specializing in Acute Care Gerontology and hopes to be a part of a surgical team in the operating room. This would not have been possible if the faculty at Marquette University had not welcomed Madaline with open arms, which has allowed her opportunities to return the kindness and understanding that they have shown Madaline. By being a part of the Institute for Women's Leadership, Madaline would like to represent the Cambodian, Laos, Thai, Vietnamese, and Dai community as a wife, mother of four children, student, and future healthcare worker. It has put Madaline in a position to "be the difference" and encourage others like her that there will be a place for them at this wonderful institution.
Check out Madaline's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Design Intern — May–August 2022
Gabrielle Chun is a junior in the Opus College of Engineering, majoring in Mechanical Engineering with minors in Business Administration, Graphic Design, and Writing-Intensive English. Looking to enrich her interdisciplinary curriculum, Chun has spent her time at Marquette University getting involved on-campus and growing through each opportunity available to her. In fact, her latest role as the Outreach Director for the Society of Women Engineers at Marquette revealed a passion for female empowerment in STEM fields. This experience combined with her talent for graphic art and design has led her to the Institute for Women's Leadership. She joined the IWL team not only to gain practical experience in her fields of study but also to promote diversity and inclusivity in leadership. Chun is excited to work with a team that champions all women in the workplace.
Check out Gabby's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Professor Andrea Schneider
Inaugural IWL Director — September 2019–June 2022
Professor Andrea Schneider, J.D., joined the faculty at Marquette in 1996. She teaches alternative dispute resolution, also known as ADR, as well as negotiation, ethics, and international conflict resolution. She is also the director of the nationally-ranked ADR program in the Law School. Schneider is the author or co-author of numerous books, book chapters, and articles in the field of dispute resolution including negotiation and gender. In 2016, she gave her first TEDx talk, Women Don’t Negotiate and Other Similar Nonsense. Most recently, she was named the 2017 recipient of an American Bar Association Award for Outstanding Scholarly Work. Schneider gives negotiation trainings at universities, corporations, law firms, and court systems around the world.
“I am extremely honored to be the first director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership and to help set the foundation for the research that the institute can accomplish,” Schneider said. “We all are eager to help enhance leadership and career development programming serving women on campus and in the community while encouraging cutting-edge research to influence the national discussion on gender inequality.”
Check out Andrea's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Brand Building Intern — May 2021–June 2022
Gabriella Santamaria is a sophomore in the College of Communication, majoring in Advertising and minoring in Public Relations, with an emphasis on leadership. Upon becoming an active individual in and around Marquette University, she discovered she had a keen eye for design and innovative thinking. Santamaria sought out organizations that both inspired her and supported inclusivity. Her previous experience in the Milwaukee community has created a foundation of entrepreneurial and brand-building experience, thus inspiring her to bring her talents to the Institute of Women's Leadership. Santamaria's passion for female focused initiatives made IWL the ideal fit in furthering her reach towards female leadership in the classroom, workplace, and the local community. IWL captures her desire to promote equal opportunities that support and encourage women of all ages, originating from any culture or community, to embrace their own leadership journey.
Check out Gabriella's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Dr. Debra L. Oswald
IWL Co-Director — September 2021–May 2022
Debra L. Oswald, Ph.D., is a social psychologist and a Professor in the Department of Psychology. She joined the faculty at Marquette University in 2003, is the Director of Undergraduate Studies in Psychology, and teaches Social Psychology, Psychology of Gender Roles, and Psychology of Prejudice. She is co-author of the textbook Social Psychology (8th edition) and has published over 40 peer-reviewed articles in journals such as Sex Roles, Psychology of Women Quarterly, Psychology of Sexual Orientation and Gender Diversity, and Journal of Interpersonal Violence. Her research and teaching focus on stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination with an emphasis on gender-related issues. This research utilizes an intersectional perspective and includes topics such as understanding women’s experiences with sexism, sexual harassment, interpersonal violence, and relationships.
Debra is delighted to join the IWL team as co-director. She is excited to have the opportunity to work with this talented, interdisciplinary team and apply her academic interests to develop programming that supports women and gender non-binary faculty and staff on campus.
Check out Debra's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Events Intern — May 2021–May 2022
Lauren is a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, majoring in political science and criminology at Marquette University. Lauren has spent her time in Milwaukee interning for the public information division of City Hall and has also interned for an industrial lighting company and participated on a congressional campaign. Lauren aspires to gain new experiences throughout her years of school to be best prepared for life after college. She looks forward to learning more about political processes in her community and hopes to focus on her research and writing skills. Lauren comes from a diverse background, which has propelled her interest in traveling and experiencing the various cultures the world has to offer. Her internship with IWL allows Lauren to build on her communication skills and better connect with the community around her.
Check out Lauren's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Website Intern — May 2021–May 2022
Maggie Kemp is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences, majoring in Mathematics and Environmental Studies. Maggie's time at Marquette has been spent chasing every learning opportunity available to her. Her latest pursuit as a labratory research assistant has opened her eyes to the world of Environmental Research and Data Science, which capture her passions for sustainability and analysis, and are what she plans to pursue in the future. Maggie's interdisciplinary coursework fostered another passion for social welfare and justice, which led her to joining the IWL team as a website intern in June 2021. She joined IWL to be part of an organization that expanded on her coursework to provide a real-world learning experience in inclusivity and diversity. She is excited to continue with a team that focuses on uplifting and supporting women from all backgrounds in the workplace.
Check out Maggie's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Design Intern — January 2020–May 2022
Olivia Qualls is a senior in the College of Business Administration, majoring in marketing with a minor in graphic design from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. Her academic endeavors capture her interest in creating impactful messaging through strategy and design. Qualls began her extracurricular discovery at MU as a photographer for the Marquette Wire. Her internship with IWL offers the opportunity to merge her skill with her belief in promoting equity. Growing up surrounded by a large family of multicultural, strong women, Qualls' enthusiasm for advancing women’s leadership began early. She is committed to the movement toward equity for women, persons of color, those with disabilities, the LGBTQ+ community, and all other marginalized communities. Creating a voice and a platform for these individuals through her work at IWL is just the beginning of a lifelong journey.
Check out Olivia's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Video Editor & Producer — August 2020–March 2022
Benjamin Linzy is a Ph.D. Candidate in history at Marquette University. Linzy received his MA in global history with an emphasis on Middle East North African history from Marquette in 2017. Genocide, domestic right-wing terrorist movements, and transnational paramilitarism are some of Linzy's research interests. Linzy has presented his research into transnational conflicts and political violence across the United States. Before returning to university in 2009, Linzy worked as a deckhand on the Mississippi River before an injury forced him to become a licensed insurance adjuster. Alongside that work, Linzy's dissertation focuses on the policing of “dissident” movements in Progressive-era America. In addition to his studies, Linzy works as an Office & Research Coordinator for the Center for Urban Research, Teaching, and Outreach. He is the Executive Producer of Marquette’s COVID Conversations Podcast, hosts the weekly history podcast Evoking History, and serves as the Editor-in-Chief for the Milwaukee Turner’s newsletter.
Check out Ben's LinkedIn to see what he is up to now!
Gala Intern — February–March 2022
Joanna Gao is a sophomore in the College of Health Sciences, majoring in Biomedical Sciences and minoring in Interdisciplinary Culture, Health, and Illness. Growing up in an immigrant family instilled in her an appreciation of how unique backgrounds fundamentally shape life experiences. Thus, in both her academic and extracurricular pursuits, Joanna has chased opportunities to broaden her human perspective. Joanna’s involvement as a research assistant in community health, as well as first-hand experience with patients as a nurse’s aide and healthcare volunteer have inspired in her a heart for health disparities and an understanding of the need to tell peoples’ narratives in numerous, creative ways. Her ongoing interest in graphic design and experience as a freelancer led her to join IWL, where she hopes to give voice to those overlooked and underrepresented and continue to tackle the necessary yet impossible task of bringing equity to an imbalanced world.
Gala Intern — February–March 2022
Check out Stella's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Social Media/Website Intern — August 2020–August 2021
Energetic. Passionate. Sarcastic. Hyper. Driven. Mischievous. Resourceful.
Damaris Zita can claim these characteristics and many more. Damaris is a 2021 graduate from the Diederich College of Communication, who majored in advertising with a minor in graphic design from the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design. Zita grew up in a diverse family that promoted cultural education and an open-minded mindset. This inspired her to continue her education into her own culture and expand her knowledge in cultures and peoples from around the globe. She strives towards bettering herself and the people around her and working towards positively impacting women, BIPOC, and other marginalized communities. Her work at IWL reflected that and showcased the beginning of an exciting culturally sensitive and impactful career for her.
Check out Damaris's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Intern — March–May 2021
Neris is a graduate of the College of Arts & Sciences, who majored in Biological Sciences with a minor in Culture, Health, and Illness. In her early undergrad career, she struggled trying to figure out which career path was best for her, but she knew she wanted to help others. This instantly led Neris towards the medical field and social work. During her time at Marquette, she participated in leadership events, Hunger Clean-Up, research surrounding domestic violence, as well as worked with individuals needing rehabilitation services. Neris grew into a person who is compassionate, open-minded, and willing to help those who are in need. IWL provided insight on how to help others by being a voice for them and she can not wait to use these skills beyond MU.
Website Intern — October 2020–May 2021
Natalie Moe is a 2021 graduate from the College of Arts & Sciences, who specialized in writing intensive English and public relations. Moe spent much of her time at Marquette utilizing her writing skills in her classes, internships, leadership experiences, and did similar work for IWL as the first Website Intern. Moe first began her professional career at Marquette at the Ott Memorial Writing Center as a writing tutor. Over the next couple years Moe honed her communications skills through her internships, even working for Marquette's College of Engineering Industry Relations as a Communications Intern, as well as other local Milwaukee organizations. Moe is passionate about working for organizations that look to improve the lives of others, especially those in marginalized groups. This made IWL a perfect fit for Moe as she saw the important work IWL does to give women new opportunities and educate them on becoming leaders in the workforce.
Check out Natalie's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Sasha Parsons Waters
Women's Innovation Network Coordinator — June 2017–January 2021
Sasha Parsons Waters is a Human Resources Professional specializing in advancing women and other underrepresented groups by building leadership development programs, driving cultural change in organizations, and increasing inclusion. She established the structure for the Women’s Innovation Network (WIN) and served on the leadership team of the Institute for Women’s Leadership (IWL), as a Co-chair for The Women of Marquette Employee Resource Group, and a member of the campus Equity & Inclusion Committee.
Check out Sasha's Linkedin to see what she is up to now!
Dr. Jean Grow
Co-Director — Retired from Marquette: December 31, 2020
Dr. Jean Grow joined Marquette in 2000. She served as chair of both The Department of Strategic Communication and The Faculty Committee on Diversity and Equity and was director of the University Fine Arts Program. Her research interests are the underrepresentation of women in creative departments and the lack of diversity across the advertising industry. She has interviewed women from more than eight countries and spoken around the world: at the 3% Conference in San Francisco (2012) and London (2015); and delivered the keynotes in Hong Kong (2017), Amsterdam (2018) and Valdiva, Chile (2019). Dr. Grow has been published widely in leading academic journals and co-authored the bestselling textbook on advertising creativity, Advertising Creative: Strategy, Copy and Design (Sage). Grow came from the advertising industry and continues to consult with clients such as Flamingo International/London and Nike.
Check out Dr. Jean Grow's LinkedIn to see what she is up to now!
Intern — February 2020–May 2020
Esabeau Neale studied at the Diederich College of Communication, majoring in public relations with a minor in advertising. Neale had worked in social media and branding for almost a year through a digital media internship with Marquette Athletics and her position at the IWL. She had also dipped her toes into design, with her logo being chosen by the Next Step Clinic, the recipient of the first Marquette President’s Challenge Award. Neale’s passion lies within creating a better future for women, like herself, entering an industry known for inequality and inequity. Ensuring that all women, and others who are underrepresented, have a voice, presence and place within the working world is an extremely important aspect of her work with IWL. Carving an extensive, welcoming and fearless path for others and opening the conversation surrounding women’s leadership is her No. 1 goal.
Check out Esabeau's Linkedin to see what she is up to now!
WIN Intern — January 2019–April 2020
Carter majored in Advertising and Digital Media at Marquette. As a college student, she was fascinated by the art of storytelling and composing my own narrative through digital content creation. During her time at Marquette, she was a contributing blog writer for the Odyssey, a national writing platform for all college students across the nation. In addition to that, she was a content writer for Impressions of Beauty, a company that connects multicultural college women to beauty brands they love. As a young black woman at a predominantly white institution, Carter made it her goal to get involved in the black community and to be apart of creating new programs and initiatives for black students to feel welcomed Marquette. Carter helped to launch the club "CampusCurlz," which is a group that celebrates natural hair. In addition, shed helped launch and co lead a Black Christian Ministry group on campus that served as a safe space for black believers to work on developing stronger personal relationships with God. During her time at Marquette, Carter was ecstatic to be apart of the change at Marquette for promoting all things concerning diversity and inclusion. With her IWL internship, she learned how to effectively advertise and promote IWL events to the student.
Check out Kristen's Linkedin to see what she is up to now!