INTERNATIONAL. Harnessing education to empower women, Tupperware Brands today announced the creation of the Tupperware Global Links Program, a yearlong externship designed to inspire a new generation of Iraqi women entrepreneurs and, in turn, help strengthen the country's struggling economy and rebuild its middle class.
Tupperware, a longtime World Economic Forum (WEF) participant, is announcing the initiative at the annual meeting because of its strong and ongoing connection to WEF's Global Gender Parity Group and because it exemplifies this year's conference theme: The Great Transformation: Shaping New Models.
Developed in partnership with the U.S. Secretary of State's Office of Global Women's Issues and Rollins College, the Global Links program will sponsor a female Iraqi professor in the United States for one year. The two-part program includes a hands-on externship at Tupperware's headquarters in Orlando and an academic year in residence at nearby Rollins College, where she will participate in a specially designed curriculum focused on entrepreneurship, women business ownership and financial self-sufficiency.
Using a "train-the-trainer" model, the program will enable the professor to return to Iraq and impart her training on hundreds of Iraqi university students.
Tupperware, which operates globally and invests in the social, economic and educational empowerment of women all over the world, identified a need for the Global Links program during a site visit in Iraq. The company wanted to invest in Iraq's long-term future by leveraging the untapped potential in women, who can play an important role in helping to drive recovery and growth.
"While Iraq is poised to experience double-digit economic growth over the next few years, a strengthened private sector is required to support long-term recovery and success," said Rick Goings, Tupperware Brands Corporation Chairman & CEO and a participant in WEF's Global Gender Parity Group. "Through Global Links, we are advancing Tupperware's entrepreneurial spirit and long tradition of women helping women. In keeping with this year's World Economic Forum theme, we are shaping a new model - a 'learn and return' model - that has a transformational ability to improve women's economic security and leave them poised to participate fully in civic life and in the active growth and development of their country."
At Tupperware, the participating professor will gain practical experience from the multi-billion dollar public company, learning the fundamentals of direct selling, sales force development, entrepreneurial strategic planning, market analysis and general management skills, among other global business skills.
At Rollins College, she will participate in a comprehensive curriculum that includes graduate-level business courses, such as social entrepreneurship and sustainable enterprise, courses in English/Business communications and women's studies, job shadowing, participation in third-party entrepreneurial and leadership activities, and one-on-one faculty coaching.
"Our global focus and hands-on approach to management is ideal for this program and a model for teaching women to start businesses of their own," said Craig McAllaster, Dean of the Rollins College Crummer Graduate School of Business. "Our intent is to create an opportunity for the visiting professor to experience firsthand our approach to entrepreneurial opportunities, an experience she can take back to Iraq and share with other women there. It is a proud moment for Rollins to be involved with a program that will bring empowerment to women in Iraq as their country develops a stronger economy and they achieve inspiring personal success."
The Secretary's Office of Global Women's Issues, which works to promote stability, peace and development by empowering women politically, socially, and economically around the world, is involved in programs such as Global Links to ensure Iraqi women have the necessary skills to participate in post-conflict governance.
Melanne Verveer, United States Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women's Issues, has said, "Iraqi women entrepreneurs are a vital source of growth to power the Iraq economy, yet they face tremendous challenges to their full economic participation. The Global Links program is a unique public-private partnership that was designed to meet some of the most pressing needs for Iraqi women seeking to expand entrepreneurship in the country.
"Combining the power of executive business education, mentorship and hands-on experience shadowing leading entrepreneurs in the United States, the program will help unleash the potential of a professor who is dedicated to helping a new generation of women contribute to the future growth and development of Iraq."
The office, which helped to develop Global Links and vetted the pool of applicants with the assistance of U.S. Embassy Baghdad, will also meet with the candidate during the program.
Dr. Amel Abed Mohammed Ali, professor and head of the Department of Industrial Management in Babylon University's College of Administration & Economics, has been selected as the inaugural Global Links scholar. Among other topics, she specializes in conflict and change management in business, and believes the program will enable her to "develop both the intellectual and economic standard of Iraqi women, as well as the Iraqi community."
The Global Links pilot begins this month and will continue through December. Tupperware expects to continue the program next year and hopes to inspire other universities and countries to use its program as a model for international learning.
Tupperware Brands Corporation and Mr. Goings have been actively involved in the World Economic Forum for many years, participating in sessions ranging from gender parity to global health.
About Tupperware Brands Corporation
Tupperware Brands Corporationis a portfolio of global direct selling companies, selling innovative, premium products across multiple brands and categories through an independent sales force of 2.8 million. Product brands and categories include design-centric preparation, storage and serving solutions for the kitchen and home through the Tupperware brand and beauty and personal care products for consumers through the Armand Dupree, Avroy Shlain, BeautiControl, Fuller Cosmetics, NaturCare, Nutrimetics, and Nuvo brands.
About the Secretary's Office of Global Women's Issues
Through the Secretary's Office of Global Women's Issues, the U.S. Department of State works to promote stability, peace, and development by empowering women politically, socially, and economically around the world. The Office is organized upon four pillars: 1) promoting the full engagement of women in the political and economic spheres; 2) mitigating the impact of violence against women and girls; 3) addressing underlying socio-economic problems, including women's access to health and education, food security, and global problems such as climate change; and 4) ensuring that women are integrated as equal participants in reconciliation, post-conflict reconstruction, and development in areas affected by conflict.
About Rollins College
Founded in 1885, Rollins College is Florida's oldest recognized college, and is consistently ranked by U.S. News & World Report as one of "America's best colleges." The Rollins MBA at the Rollins College Crummer Graduate School of Business, is ranked a top MBA program by Bloomberg Businessweek, Forbes and U.S. News & World Report. It is among a select group of business schools in the nation that have been accredited at the graduate level and is distinguished by its faculty and the academic and business successes of its graduates.
The Rollins MBA offers degrees in four different formats for both working professionals and full-time students. The school also houses Centers of Excellence in Leadership, Advanced Entrepreneurship, Career Development, Management & Executive Education, and Philanthropy and Nonprofit Leadership.
About Dr. Amel Abed Mohammed Ali
Amel Abed Mohammed Ali, Ph.D., is a professor and the head of the Department of Industrial Management in Babylon University's College of Administration & Economics in Babylon, Iraq. She is an accomplished researcher and academician focusing on several research topics, including strategies of organizational conflict management and change management and the effect of transformational leadership and information technology on business operations.
She received a B.S. in management from the University of Baghdad, an M.S. in management and technology from the University of Wales and a Ph.D. in business administration from the University of Al-Mustansiriyh.