As president of the Women of Haslam, Dierks seeks to offer empowerment opportunities to the women.
As a first-year student in 2019, Paige Dierks joined a newly-formed student organization in the Haslam College of Business. A business analytics major from Acworth, Georgia, Dierks was seeking community. She found that and opportunities for leadership and friendship in the Women of Haslam.
Students formed the club to bring academic and community business women together in a variety of networking opportunities designed to strengthen the members’ knowledge, experiences and resources.
Dierks and 50 other students joined the club as founding members. Today, as a junior, she is president of the group, which counts more than 200 undergraduate and graduate students as members.
“It’s been amazing from the start,” Dierks says. “Seeing how far the club has come and how my leadership skills have grown means so much.”
Dierks wants to provide these same opportunities for growth to the club’s current members. With the club’s executive board, Dierks plans a balance of professional and social events for the group meant to introduce women in all professions to the principles of business, entrepreneurship and leadership.
Among these opportunities is a networking night with five employers, many of which are represented by Haslam female alumni. Members can bring resumes, apply for internships and spend valuable time becoming comfortable speaking with potential employers.
“Speaking one-on-one with women in a job that is typically held by a male can be empowering for our members,” Dierks says. “It’s important for women to see other women in these roles.”
Women of Haslam also gives members time to know each other socially and give back to the community. Dierks was the philanthropy chair for the group her first year and applied her passion for service to the role.
The club’s service initiatives have supported the East Tennessee Children’s Hospital, Zoo Knoxville and Junior Achievement. An upcoming event will help a local women’s shelter.
“We want our members to connect with the community,” Dierks says. “Community service, professional development, networking with peers and professionals and empowering women are our goals.”
Dierks plans to spend the rest of her tenure as president achieving these goals by providing a community for students through workshops, guest speakers, service opportunities and other events.
“It’s been great to come together and learn from and support each other,” she says.
Her biggest dream for the club is to see it continue its rapid growth and bring more students together.
“I’m excited to see where things keep going,” Dierks says. “I want Women of Haslam to continue growing within Haslam and the UT community and enhancing student experiences like it did for me my first year.”