by Emily Costantino

“She’s not strong enough.” “She doesn’t have the ability to be at the top.” “She’s not smart enough.” These are common stereotypes that come to mind when thinking about a woman leading a business.

One of the many experiences that I gained from my internship with the Washington County Chamber of Commerce and Tourist Promotion Agency was the Women in Business event. The event was held at Bella Sera in Southpointe while many women filled the room.  The women in business event was a way to help inspire women in knowing that they can compete with men throughout the business community. During the event, S&T Bank recognized four women for their professional achievements, leadership accomplishments, and finally who has overcome the stereotype that women have developed in a business setting. These four women included: the president of W&J college, the president of California University of Pennsylvania and two CEO’s of major companies within the Southpointe region. Each woman was recognized with an award for each and every one of her accomplishments throughout her professional career. The four business professionals told a story that was eye opening to the fact that woman can stand out in a business facility.

This event was important to every single woman leader that sat in the audience and to me because of how they overcame situations that stood in their way of their career. Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” album starts off with her introducing that Jay-Z betrayed her by cheating on her. This is a step in her life that was a major drawback for not only her family but also her career. With this album Beyoncé showed the public that women can overcome obstacles and turn them into positive situations with women having the upper hand. With S&T Bank’s Women In Business event, they have also showed women that we can overcome disadvantages in the world and completely turn them into our favor, which was exactly what this event has showed me.