Adelaide Business School’s inaugural Women in Leadership MBA Scholarship

Simmonette Duggin and Jane Creaser, the inaugural recipients of the Women in Leadership scholarship

Women in Leadership MBA Scholarship 2023 Inaugural Recipients, Simmonette Duggin (left) and Jane Creaser (right).

Gender inequality in Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs continues to be an issue across Australia, with the national average of female-identifying students sitting consistently for the past decade at 33%. While Adelaide Business School outperforms that average at 38% across our MBA program suite, we are still actively working to bring more women into the program.

As MBA programs serve as a critical step on the pathway to senior leadership roles and higher salaries, it’s unsurprising that amongst the largest 200 companies in Australia, only 33% of board members and 19.4% of CEOs are women.

Research shows that women bring different perspectives and approaches that result in improved overall business performance, more inclusive workplaces, increased organisational corporate social responsibility, and the building of organisational reputation.

To help address and reduce this inequality, Adelaide Business School has established the Women in Leadership scholarship dedicated to supporting women through the MBA. This scholarship is for candidates who can demonstrate outstanding leadership potential, whether it be holding a senior position at a young age, or leading innovative projects for an organisation. In 2023, the Adelaide Business School is very happy to announce Simmonette Duggin and Jane Creaser as the inaugural recipients of this scholarship.

"The University of Adelaide is committed to equality and inclusivity," says Dr Gary Bowman, MBA Director and Associate Professor at Adelaide Business School.

"Business schools have an important role to play in facilitating a reduction in the gender pay gap and the inequality that exists in business leadership roles across Australia and the world."

"We want to support women in the MBA program so they can make the impact they seek from their careers. This scholarship also specifically rewards women who have a track record of actively supporting the development of other women," Dr Bowman says.

Simmonette Duggin’s experience in leadership roles has made her more resilient and more astute to the broader challenge of achieving gender equality. She is proud to be recognised by this scholarship.

"I admire Adelaide Business School for wanting to be part of the solution to address gender inequalities and actively encourage women to be part of the program. I am humbled to be one of the first recipients of this scholarship alongside Jane," Duggin says.

Duggin is eager to move into a transformational leadership role that understands and promotes the importance of diversity to achieving success in a personal and business context.

"I am studying an MBA at Adelaide Business School to learn about myself, better myself, and feel more prepared and confident for the next stage of my career. So far, studying the MBA has been a rewarding experience," she says.

"A highlight has been the calibre of my fellow MBA students – we learn from each other. I am developing solid working relationships and gaining insights into other industries. It’s evident the alumni network is strong and welcoming of students, the future alumni."

Jane Creaser feels honoured and grateful to be recognised by Adelaide Business School through this scholarship and believes it’s an important progress step for our society.

"As a society, we have come a long way with gender equity, but we still have a very long way to go, and I’d love to be part of the continued change."

"This scholarship is a welcome financial support, enabling me to focus fully on my academic progress and success, and community impact, rather than making decisions solely based on financial pressures."

Creaser is undertaking an MBA with the goal to be a senior executive business leader of a values-driven organisation, and to further her contribution to volunteering, mentoring, and thought leadership.

"The global skills, knowledge, and networks that I am gaining through this MBA Scholarship are second-to-none and is already furthering my positive contribution to my workplace and communities. I am sure it will enable me to fulfil my potential and further my career," Creaser says.

More information about Adelaide Business School and the Adelaide MBA can be found on our website.

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