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Women's Initiative for Leadership Development (WILD)

The Women’s Initiative for Leadership Development (WILD) is a student-led group affiliated with the MSU Women’s Resource Center. The mission of WILD is “To inspire and prepare the women [students] of Michigan State University to become leaders on our campus, in our communities and for our world.”

WILD hosts many events on campus which promote the advancement of women-identified leaders through leadership development, entrepreneurship and community service. The group is made up of student leaders from all different backgrounds and majors who come together to empower women to achieve their greatest leadership potential. 

Get Involved

If you are interested in joining WILD, contact advisor, Lydia Weiss at

Signature Events

Women’s Leadership Conference

Each fall, WILD hosts a conference which is focused on the professional and leadership development of participants through a series of workshops, keynote addresses and activities. The Women’s Leadership Conference provides a safe environment for students, faculty, staff and community members to explore their leadership style and improve their areas of expertise. Workshop topics range from interviewing tips to activism to communication skills to maintaining personal connections and everything in between.

Past Keynote Speakers:

  • 2013: Allison McClintick, Leader Development Specialist and the CEO and owner of FlightLead, a veteran owned training company based out of Lansing, Michigan.
  • 2012: Carlotta Walls LaNier, a former Spartan, was the youngest member of the Little Rock Nine, the nine courageous African-American students who integrated Arkansas’ Little Rock Central High School in 1957.
  • 2011: Rachel Hutter, Director, FOS Resorts Development and Integration at Walt Disney Parks & Resorts & MSU Alumna.
  • 2010: Molly Fletcher, Senior Vice President for Academic & Student Affairs and International Relations for the five-campus UMass system.

Women’s Day of Service

The Women’s Day of Service is a full-day service event in the Lansing area. Michigan State University and community members have an opportunity to volunteer at various local agencies focused on social justice and gender equity. This service event inspires the importance of giving back to our community in order to become well-rounded global citizens. Past service locations include Haven House, City Rescue Mission of Lansing, Lansing Food Bank Garden Project, Lansing City Market, East Lansing Healthcare Center, and Allen Neighborhood Center.
Weekly Meetings

WILD hosts weekly meetings in the fall and spring semesters. During the fall, meetings are dedicated to planning the Women’s Leadership Conference and developing WILD members’ leadership skills through hands-on learning. The conference planning committee consists of an executive board (co-chairs who facilitate meetings and subcommittee chairs who facilitate action committees) and general members. During spring semester, weekly meetings include leadership trainings, speakers and socializing activities. These meetings provide structured leadership building and selection of future executive board members.


WILD began as the “Women’s Leadership Planning Committee” then became the “Women’s Initiative for Leadership Development” to represent an expansion of activities and the purpose of this student group. The Women’s Leadership Conference began in March 1995 as a Women’s History Banquet and developed into a day-long conference in 2004. Now, the conference is held in November and continues to grow every year, with an average attendance of 200 people. Throughout the years, WILD has developed its campus presence through activities such as participating in the MSU Homecoming Parade and volunteering for campus events such as Lil’ Sibs Weekend, U-Fest and Take Your Child to Work Day. WILD has a rich history and will continue towards a wonderful future!