People, Research

Graduate student recognized with international leadership award

May 10, 2022

Hayley Finn

Hayley Finn is capping off her graduate school career with the ‘Meet the Moment for Women and Leadership Award’ from the International Leadership Association (ILA).

“I've attended an ILA conference every year and they’ve been some of my favourite moments that I've had as a graduate student so to be recognized with this award is very exciting,” Finn said.

The award recognizes how Finn’s conference participation will contribute towards advancing women’s leadership. As part of the event, she will be a panelist on gender bias called, ‘Sexism by degrees.’

The panel will explore the different contexts of sexism in higher education. For Finn, she will contribute her expertise on women coaching in Canadian university sport. In addition, she will also chair a panel on leadership development programs as well as pathways and mentorship models for young women and girls.

Recently, Finn successfully defended her PhD dissertation, ‘Exploring the underrepresentation of women coaches in Canadian university sport.’  In her thesis, Finn examined how institutional practices in Canadian university sport contribute to the gender gap in coaching.

Finn credits the ILA for providing many learning opportunities during her graduate journey. For example, she’s met people from diverse backgrounds and has volunteered on numerous committees, including the conference and research committees. All these opportunities have provided Finn with connections that have developed her research career.

“It's also important to give back,” Finn said. “Having those volunteer opportunities while supporting a cause that I'm really passionate about has been fulfilling.”

The ILA is dedicated to leadership theory and practice. The organization brings together professionals from every sector, discipline and profession across the globe to produce research, cultivate a deeper understanding of the world and generate new insights into how to exercise effective leadership.

“It’s really important to bring everyone into those conversations and to meet scholars, business leaders and to see the diversity and experiences of others,” Finn said.

Finn will receive her award in June at the Reflection and Rejuvenation: Inspiring Women Leaders conference in Portsmouth, United Kingdom.