By: Rebecca Taylor (Current Fellow of the IE Women Initiative)

Paula Robles is the Executive director of the MBA program at IE, and a fierce advocate to bring more gender parity to the MBA. When discussing why it is essential to have programs like the women’s initiative at IE and to help attract more female student Robles says, ¨What happens in the MBA mirrors what happens in society. We have a duty as a top learning institution to attract more women¨ the more women in MBA will correlate to more women in leadership positions and helping to break the glass ceiling of the C-suite positions.

However, bringing more women to the classroom is not just about the impact that will occur in society but also the effect this will have on the learnings inside of a class. Robles emphasized that when more women are present in the classroom, it helps to create diversity in every sense of the word. Robles stated, ¨beyond gender or nationality, it’s more diversity in experiences both career, and personal that bring about the new perspectives in learning.¨ She emphasized that when examining a business case in the class, it is essential to look at a situation from different angles and to share multiple perspectives. ¨it’s not about a female perspective or a male perspective it’s a shift towards what’s essential.¨

At IE, like any top graduate school, fellow students will teach you as much as the professors. The executive director of the MBA program, also emphasized on this when discussing the benefits of more women in the classroom, ¨women will have more opportunity to learn from other women… women inspiring other women.” In a world where sometimes it is hard as a woman to imagine yourself in the next leadership level doing an MBA allows both women and men to gain confidence which is often missing. ¨It’s a shame that we all have something to say and our voice doesn’t get heard in the right places.¨ Robles encourages any student, male or female, who is hungry to learn and gain confidence to apply for IE´s MBA.