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Women@Manchester Network ‘Inspiring Leaders’ session

16 Jan 2023

Professor Colette Fagan and Professor April McMahon share perspectives about their career

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Earlier this week, our Women@Manchester network hosted another empowering session as part of their ‘Inspiring Women Leaders’ series. Within the event, Professor Colette Fagan, Vice President for Research, and Professor April McMahon, Vice President for Teaching, Learning and Students shared their own authentic and honest perspectives about their career journey to date.  

Colette shared detail of her own academic journey to professorship and offered advice to those wanting to progress, saying “build your ‘inner circle’ of mentors and friends - they will support, advise and encourage you to aim for things you may mistakenly think are beyond your reach.” 

April agreed, adding that in her own experience you “just kept swimming” even though at times she couldn’t believe she landed certain roles.  She adds, “As long as your lack of confidence doesn’t get in your way and stop you from applying for roles, it can work in your favour and keep you grounded.” 

When looking at those that inspire her leadership style, April described the “bookshelf” of people that have inspired her throughout her career, that she can pick and choose leadership qualities from. 

One attendee said, “It is so refreshing to hear the leaders of our University speak so honestly about the challenges they have faced.” 

Another said, “These women are trailblazing with authenticity, humility and compassion such a fantastic session!” 

More information 

  • Visit the Women@Manchester StaffNet page 
  • To sign up to the network, please email 
  • Look out for more events and information by Women@Manchester between 6 – 10 March for International Women’s Day.