At the Women’s Sports Foundation, we work to advance the lives of women and girls through sports and physical activity with the hopes of making them strong leaders for tomorrow. Headquartered in New York City, we are a national organization that strives to have an impact around the world and help female athletes everywhere. There are also other programs whom we are proud to share and acknowledge are working towards the same goal, one such being the Women’s Sport Leadership Academy (WSLA) held at the University of Chichester in the United Kingdom. This week-long residential program provides women with the necessary tools to gain confidence and succeed as leaders of sport.
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The Women’s Sport Leadership Academy (WSLA) is designed to develop tomorrow’s leaders of sport. WSLA provides a unique learning environment designed to further develop leadership competencies and support women to become the next generation of outstanding sport’s leaders.
WSLA has been developed through a unique partnership between the Anita White Foundation (AWF), Females Achieving Brilliance (FAB) and the University of Chichester. WSLA is aimed at women in middle management aspiring to progress to become senior managers/directors. Held annually since 2014, 138 women from 34 countries around the world have gathered for the one-week residential programme of leadership development at the University.
The main component of the Academy is a week-long residential at the University of Chichester, located on the south coast of the United Kingdom. Combining the essential elements for self-critical learning and development, the unique learning environment includes high-profile guest speakers, workshops, personal development planning, national and international support groups, as well as physical activities.
Organizations that have nominated and/or sponsored women leaders from the UK to attend WSLA include: Sport England, Sport Wales, Sport Scotland, Sport Northern Ireland, the England and Wales Cricket Board, the Football Association, the Youth Sport Trust, StreetGames, the Professional Golfers’ Association, the British Heart Foundation, the Dame Kelly Holmes Trust, the Sport and Recreation Alliance, English Athletics, the Exercise Movement and Dance Partnership, Welsh Cycling, the Rugby Football League and the Scottish Football Association.
Internationally, WSLA has seen participants from sport federations such as Netball Australia, Netball Malawi and Netball South Africa and the International Cricket Council, Cricket Ireland, and Cricket Zimbabwe; National Olympic and Paralympic Committees such as Burundi, Guatemala and New Zealand; sport for development organizations based in Argentina, India, Kenya and South Africa, and; national sports ministries/councils worldwide, including Botswana, St Lucia and Tanzania. The World Rowing Federation have demonstrated considerable commitment to WSLA by supporting women from Angola, Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Canada, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Nigeria, Russia, Uzbekistan, and the UK.
WSLA has been a great success due to the mix of women who have participated and shared their personal and professional experiences of being women leaders in sport. Therefore, the AWF, FAB, and the University of Chichester are welcoming of North American applications for WSLA 2018.
Please visit the WSLA website to download an information booklet and complete an online application form. The closing date for receipt of applications is 10th November 2017. If you would like to read reports of previous WSLAs, please visit the AWF website.