Call for Female Indian Professor to Participate in Global Links Program

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Sharmistha Banerjee

ORLANDO, FL– Tupperware Brands announced the call for more Indian professors to participate in its Global Links program. In partnership with Rollins College and the US Secretary of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues, the program is designed to expand women’s entrepreneurship in developing and post-conflict countries.

Female Indian professors are encouraged to apply to participate in the five month intensive education and business program focused on social entrepreneurship. The program begins in the United States (U.S.), and it combines executive business classes, a hands-on externship at Tupperware Brands Corporation and on-going mentoring for the selected Indian business professor.

Sharmistha Banerjee
Sharmistha Banerjee

After the completion of the immersion experience, the professor returns to her home university where she would be expected to implement a social entrepreneurship plan that would have transformational impact on her students and local community.

In 2015, Dr. Sharmistha Banerjee was selected as the first Global Links scholar from India. Dr. Banerjee is a professor for the Department of Business Management at the University of Calcutta. Since her return from her U.S. based immersion experience, Dr. Banerjee has held nine workshops where more than 400 students and 50 faculty members have been engaged in social entrepreneurship curriculum. 14 out of the 400 students have been trained and selected to work directly with female entrepreneurs who own enterprises in the Calcutta community.

Connection with the female entrepreneurs was made possible by the support of Bandhan Bank, which has provided critical business loans to the entrepreneurs. Not only has this program taught the students business fundamentals, it has inspired them to work on business projects that give back to their community. The mission of the program is to continue to build on the “learn and return” model to further entrepreneurial opportunities for women in India.

After a successful 2012 pilot in Iraq, the program expanded to India – a country that sees only 35% female participation in the job market, despite it being the 10th largest economy with respect to GDP, and with a projected growth rate of 5 percent. By 2020, the working age population of India is expected to reach 856 million, translating to a need for 10 million jobs per year. However, women continue to face many cultural, societal and educational barriers to labor force entry and economic empowerment. Global Links is a cross-cultural exchange program that was launched with the objective of empowering women through opportunity and education. The train-the-trainer model reaches students at the scholar’s home university and, through the expanded efforts of these students, additional women in their communities receive ongoing mentorship and support.

”At Tupperware Brands, we know that when you uplift a woman, you uplift entire societies,” said Rick Goings, Tupperware Brands Corporation Chairman and CEO. “Through the Global Links ‘learn and return’ model there is a ripple effect of social impact that aligns so perfectly with what Tupperware has been doing for more than 70 years – empowering women, enabling their financial independence and changing lives through opportunity, support and relationships.”

The U.S. Secretary of State’s Office of Global Women’s Issues utilizes the Global Links Program as a pillar for advancing women’s economic empowerment principles globally. “Programs like Global Links illustrate the impact that’s possible when government, business and academia work together,” said Catherine Russell, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for Global Women’s Issues.

Since the inauguration of the Global Links Program, many exciting changes have occurred at Rollins College that support this particular academic program area. Most significant is the start of the Business and Social Entrepreneurship (BSE) major, which combines practical business knowledge, entrepreneurial skills, and understanding of current economic, political, cultural, and environmental issues. With development of this academic program area, the Global Links Scholar should have greater breadth and depth of courses and co-curricular activities to support her learning while on campus and to build her portfolio of implementation ideas for her return to India.

Grant Cornwell, President of Rollins College, expressed his enthusiasm for the continuation of the Program: “Rollins College is committed to educating students for global citizenship and responsible leadership, and programs such as Global Links enrich their personal and professional experiences while uniting faculty, students and community on a global scale.”

Rollins College will welcome the next Global Links Scholar from India in January 2017. The deadline for application submission is September 6, 2016.

The U.S. portion of the program will take place from January -May 2017. Full application details can be found at https://www.tupperwarebrands.com/assets/files/2017_Application_fillable.pdf.

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