Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto

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Leadership Development for Women: Early Career (formerly ATHENA)

A two-day program for women who aspire to lead

Dates: October 29 - 30, 2019
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Participant profile: Project and team leads, managers, and aspiring leaders

The October 2019 program is now full.

It will be offered again in October 2020. If you would like to be notified when applications for that program opens, please contact

The Athena Program addresses fundamental leadership competencies and offers participants effective strategies for performance and career management. The Program promotes personal authenticity and self-cultivation as stepping-stones to team leadership and increased accountability. The Program includes a pre-program EQ-i Emotional Intelligence assessment and post-program coaching to enhance learning and establish a strategy for personal and professional growth.

Program Themes:

  • Career Management
    Personal assessment of key strengths and growth areas, and understanding of Emotional Intelligence as an essential skill for effective team and individual performance

  • Effective Leadership
    Understanding leadership style, communication strategies and techniques, gender, culture and relationship insights, and leading through change and uncertainty

  • Professional Effectiveness
    Personal branding, self-assertion, negotiating for success, personal and organizational goal alignment and professional networking

Graduate spotlight: Katie Pollock »

Organizational Benefits

  • Improve team leadership & performance
  • Equip employees to take on more responsibility and accountability
  • Enhance leadership effectiveness
  • Develop high-potential female talent

Participant Benefits

  • Learn how to assess your leadership style and its impact on a team
  • Understand the power of influence
  • Tap into your Emotional Intelligence to augment your effectiveness
  • Develop your authentic brand
  • Learn a negotiation approach that is sophisticated and effective
  • Gain an external peer network


Testimonial: The Athena program is great!

Testimonial: The Athena program is great!

"The Rotman Athena Program was an absolute necessity for my career. I am so happy that I was fortunate enough to participate in this Program because it has provided a foundation of soft skills and tools that I can draw from for the rest of my life. Even though it was only 2 days, I was able to bond and connect with many of the other Program participants."

- Christina R. Waters, Operations Support Specialist, EIT, AECL Chalk River Laboratories

"The Athena Program served to further my commitment to strengthening my own personal brand and commitment to becoming an emerging leader within the not-for-profit sector. The skills, strategies and insight with regards to how to become an efficient, clear and skilled communicator were greatly beneficially. This Program will enhance my career development by equipping me with strategies to strengthen my leadership and communication skills. All the Program sessions were cross cutting from the professionals from a diverse array of fields."

- Alyson Rowe, Community Manager, WarChild Canada

"The two-day Athena Program provided me with an incredible learning experience one rarely is able to receive within such a limited time span. Each of the speakers were well-planned, relevant and brought with them a niche knowledge set conveyed through articulate, interesting and engaging sessions that have supplied me with a new set of ‘tools’ that will undoubtedly become key factors in my own personal success."

- Angela Misasi, Procurement & Strategic Sourcing, BMO Financial Group

"The Rotman Athena Program packages together a wonderful group of speakers, topics, and challenges for the course participants. Over a 2-day period, the class was able to touch on key topics that were relevant and real. I was able to take away empowering tools that allowed me to gain insight into gender diversity in the workplace, how to establish my personal brand, and how to use these tools in our professional careers. The quality of the discussion topics, the diversity in the classroom, and the experience of the speakers all contributed to this powerful and lasting learning experience."

-Ashavini Lad, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

Delee FrommDelee Fromm »

Lawyer and Psychologist Specializing in the Arenas of Negotiation, Leadership and Women's Advancement

Dorothy LazovikDorothy Lazovik »

Founder and President, Authentic Leaders Edge

geoffrey leonardelliGeoffrey Leonardelli »

Professor, Organizational Behaviour and HR Management

Carolyn MeacherCarolyn Meacher »

Leadership Coach & Consultant

Geeta ShekerGeeta Sheker »

Academic Director, Athena
Director, Initiative for Women in Business

Application Deadline: October 11, 2019


Candidates for the Athena Program are female Project and Team Leads, Managers and aspiring Leaders with 3 to 8 years' experience who aspire to career growth and greater professional influence. Participants are first-line managers, middle managers, and individual contributors

This program will be particularly valuable if you:

  • Have been identified as high-potential
  • Are looking to develop your leadership and influencing skills
  • Are seeking effective strategies and tools for professional success
  • Are a new manager


Each application is reviewed by Rotman's admissions committee to ensure suitability of participants.


If space is available and eligibility requirements are met, participants will receive a notice of admission within 10 days of receipt of their completed application and fee deposit.




  • Tuition
  • All Program materials and supplies
  • Completion certificate
  • Class-day meals (breakfast, lunch and snacks)
  • Networking reception

*Program participants will be responsible for their own travel and accommodation costs.


Deposits are required at the time of application (refundable only to applicants not accepted to the program). The balance of the program fee is due 30 days after receipt of invoice or 30 days before program start date, whichever is first.


Rotman Initiative for Women in Business participants or Rotman MBA / EMBA alumni are eligible for a discount equivalent to 10% of the Program Fee.


Please review the full version of our APPLICATION POLICIES >> for cancellation information. 


If the Program is employment-related training, Rotman must receive a letter from the employer confirming that the Program constitutes such training within the meaning of Canada Revenue Agency Interpretation Bulletin IT-470R.  Generally, the Bulletin states that where the training is taken for the benefit of the employer, there is no taxable benefit to the employee. 

If the tuition fee is paid for by the employer, it is the employer’s responsibility to determine whether or not the fees paid on behalf of the individual is a taxable benefit and should be included on his/her T4 slip.


If an employer has not sanctioned that the Program is being taken for employment reasons, any discounts are taxable benefits to the individual participant and should be included on the individual’s tax return.

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Initiative for Women in Business
Rotman School of Management

Canada-Ontario Job Grant Funds now available!
Learn more »


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This program has been approved for 13 continuing professional development hours under section A of the continuing Professional Development Log of the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA™)

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