Alumnae panel concludes Women's History Month

Alumnae panel concludes Women's History Month

Female role models are crucial for empowering and inspiring girls to break gender barriers, achieve their goals, and fulfill their potential. Ursuline’s second annual Women’s History Month Alumnae Panel brought current students face-to-face with five successful alumnae ready and willing to inspire and empower students by example.

The 2024 Women’s History Month Alumnae Panel, featuring Dr. Philomena Asante ‘88, Megan Noonan Schneider ‘99, Doreen Ali Schiefer ‘02, Stephanie LaGumina ‘09, and Anna Savino ‘15, captivated the school community with a revealing discussion about realizing the purpose and promise of an Ursuline education. Panelists shared personal stories and insights detailing how the school's mission and Core Values continue to impact their work and home lives. By providing real-world examples, the alums helped students envision their own unique paths to career success and personal fulfillment. 

Each panelist highlighted a key characteristic that propelled her forward in her career, from resilience to authenticity to inclusivity. Dr. Asante emphasized the importance of resilience, noting that success is not always a straight line and that giving up is not an option. Megan Noonan Schneider credited her mother for instilling in her the ability to stay calm under pressure, while Doreen Ali Schiefer stressed the value of authenticity. Stephanie LaGumina highlighted the strength of listening as a “superpower” and the importance of responding, not reacting. Anna Savino spoke about the significance of inclusivity and building diverse teams to foster collaboration and innovation.

The women also shared insights on the role of mentors and sponsors in career advancement. They urged students to seek out supportive networks and advocate for themselves to reach their full potential. Savino offered, “Be prepared and intentional,” adding, “Let people know what you want and how you are willing to grow.”

(L-R): Dr. Philomena Asante ‘88, Megan Noonan Schneider ‘99, Doreen Ali Schiefer ‘02, Stephanie LaGumina ‘09, and Anna Savino ‘15.


Dr. Asante noted the importance of finding a career “sponsor,” someone who can open doors for you and “say your name in rooms where opportunities are discussed.” CEO Schneider emphasized the importance of surrounding oneself with cheerleaders. Litigator LaGumina added the payoff in seizing opportunities even if feeling underqualified. Microsoft Software Engineer Schiefer urged students to “be uniquely you” and not let anyone else define what success should look like.

All panelists offered actionable career and college advice, shared the impacts of their Ursuline network connections, and reflected on how they continue to live the school motto of Serviam. Ursuline’s Class of ‘88 valedictorian Dr. Asante, reflecting on her success as a pediatrician and entrepreneur, intends to pay it forward. “You can’t do it on your own,” she said. “Teachers and mentors can help you get to the next level. Don’t limit yourself. Ever.”


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