The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus


The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus


The Student News Site of California State University, Stanislaus


    Women’s History Month Kicks Off with Women’s Leadership Forum


    Graphic by Kimberly Horne.

    Stanislaus State held its 12th annual Women’s Leadership Forum to kick off Women’s History Month. The event, which was hosted by the Stan State College of Business on March 10, was held on Zoom and was attended by many female members of the campus community, including Stan State President Ellen Junn.

    Dr. Lisa Ordóñez, the Dean of the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego, was invited to tell her story about being a Latina and having an impact on many people. The session was moderated by Stan State’s Associate Professor, Linda Dunn-Jensen, who teaches in the Department of Management, Operations and Marketing.

    Ordóñez was very excited to talk about her life experience to Stan State faculty and students. She attended UC Davis and UC Berkeley for three degrees, including a Ph.D. in Quantitative Psychology. 

    “I call myself a double first generation because my parents did not go to high school,” said Ordóñez. “For me to imagine being in a position I am… I had no idea what a professor was or did so I clearly wasn’t seeing that in my future.”

    Ordóñez spent the early years of her academic career in schools trying to succeed and go off to college to further her education. Along with everyday life challenges, she also spent those years not only studying but also working. 

    “I grew up about 40 miles away from Stanislaus State in a tiny town called Le Grande,” said Ordóñez. “I went to a real school and worked on a family ranch and we all had jobs to do part-time.”

    Ordóñez has made her life all about empowering people, especially women, and making it a priority to help women and be a mentor or guide for them.

    “The world is set up for right handers, and there are also left handers in the world that have to struggle,” explained Ordóñez.
    Ordóñez spoke about her life and how her story has introduced her to important lessons. She believes that her life will have an influence on other people’s lives because she genuinely loves to help people in her community.

    One of the lessons she learned a new professor is to accept help.

    “Women need to accept help more and ask for help more,” Ordóñez. By doing this, she believes can help change people’s perspectives about them.

    Once she reached her title as being the Dean of the Rady School of Management at UC San Diego, she recognized that the imposter syndrome that she once felt as a new professor had suddenly disappeared. She explained that her now new advice to herself is, “You got this!”

    As a leader, another lesson she learned is to never act on the first story you hear, but triangulate with others.

    “I’m not saying that people lie, most of the time people don’t, but they’re telling their story from their perspective,” explained Ordóñez.

    She also spoke about having integrity and being authentic all while remembering to laugh and have fun.

    “We spend way too much time at work to be miserable and I don’t want people around me to be miserable, Ordoñez said. As a huge baker, she often brings in baked treats to share with her peers in her office to make it a more welcoming environment.

    Dr. Ordóñez. quotes author Brene Brown, “Belonging means you are your authentic self and fitting in means you are being what other people want you to be.”

    After the event, Dunn-Jensen expressed that she was very appreciative to have Ordóñez connect with female leaders at Stan State. Although she doesn’t know Ordóñez personally, she was influenced by the session.

    Ordóñez had a Q&A session after her presentation and said that networking is important for all students to do, but especially female students.

    “Finding people you trust is important … Try out different things and see if those things work in a mentor/mentee relationship,” Dunn-Jensen added.

    Dunn-Jensen hopes that this event will be a call to action for women at Stan State to create better relationships and show that female students can make incredible impacts in the world.

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    Women’s History Month Kicks Off with Women’s Leadership Forum