Monash IT PhD student one of the first Australian participants in prestigious STEM Leadership Program

24 August 2021

The Ewha-Luce International Seminar (ELIS): Expanding Horizons opened its doors to Australia for the first time in 2021. Ruchi Sembey, a PhD candidate in Monash Faculty of Information Technology’s HumaniSE Lab was among the 10 STEM postgraduates chosen for this esteemed South Korea-USA program.

The only program in the world dedicated to empowering women postgraduate students in STEM, participants engaged in hands-on workshops, panel discussions and presentations from global leaders like General Motors, Samsung, Stanford University, Ewha Women's University South Korea and The Henry Luce Foundation.

‘I was proud to share my research alongside other women scientists during the Science Talk Concert to promote better science communication. I spoke about emerging technologies and the implementation of artificial intelligence in higher education from a gender-neutral perspective.’ Ms Sembey said.

Ruchi also hosted a panel discussion on Science and Gender, and engaged in discussion with several distinguished women scientist leaders who presented in the program – Stanford University’s Professor Londa Schiebinger, Ewha Women’s University’s President Professor Kim Eun Mee, and President and CEO of Henry Luce Foundation Dr. Mariko Silver.

Australian Commissioner for Japan and Korea Adam Cuneen sent his greetings to the Australian participants who hailed from Monash University, The University of Melbourne and Swinburne University.

‘ELIS presented excellent opportunities to connect with STEM women from the USA, Asia and Oceania to discuss gender issues around science. The program provided focused training on practical leadership skills for emerging women leaders to create a more welcoming field for STEM women through allyship, supportive friendships, academic partnerships and cross-cultural understanding.’ Ms Sembey explained.

ELIS is a fully-funded program organised by Ewha Institute for Leadership Development (EILD) at Ewha Women's University (South Korea) and the Henry Luce Foundation (USA).

Out of all the representatives selected for ELIS 2021, there were a total of 33 talented women STEM graduates drawn from 13 countries across North America, Asia and Oceania.

ELIS has been held annually in South Korea since 2015. It aims to cultivate the next generation of women STEM leaders, with a focus on presentation and facilitation skills, cross-cultural communication for global leaders and network development.