Several years ago, I read “Radiating Like a Stone, Wichita Women and the 1970s Feminist Movement,” an anthology of essays about local women who fought hard to make life better for all of us. From reading the book, I realized that much of the same issues that held women back then, are still holding us back today. Frustrated by this, I thought, “How can this happen? How do we keep the momentum going?” I started to think about how I could accomplish this on my own and how I could lead others to this idea.
In 2014, I was reminded of that realization when I read “Playing Big,” a book by Tara Mohr about how women hold themselves back in business. I’ve seen this dilemma in action in my consulting practice, Creative Solutions, which I started in 1998. This book helped me realize that it’s up to every one of us to make changes, starting with ourselves.
Our first class at Harvester Arts
Telling others about my dream to help women own their power, my friends encouraged me to pursue the project. I started planning the Finishing School for Modern Women the summer of 2015 and put together an advisory panel of 80 women. I held several focus groups, getting advice on what to charge, what classes sounded interesting and how to make it fun. The first class on September 19, 2015, Keep Moving Forward, at Harvester Arts was a big success with 25 attending!
First storefront at 340 S. Main in Wichita, Kansas
I continued to give classes at Harvester Arts, the Wichita Art Museum and Watermark Books and Café for the rest of 2015, using that time as a test period to see if there was enough interest and demand to continue. Thanks to the people who attended and co taught classes those first couple of months, I discovered that there a need for the kind of classes we offer and that I had found my mission in life. Deciding to go all in, I opened a storefront at 340 S. Main in March 2016.
In the spring of 2020, after a lot of soul searching I made the decision to join with Debra Lee and other teachers to relocate the Finishing School for Modern Women to the At the Market! Retail & Development Center, Plaza West Shopping Center, 601 N West Street,
In front of At the Market with Debra Lee
Moving into At the Market has grown our community in a supportive environment where women help each other be more successful. There is a lot going on in the space, including weekly Saturday markets, mixers, and lots of fun events that we can be part of. Other teachers, like Dawn Monroe who co-teaches our LinkedIn to Win class, also teach classes there.
Classes on Zoom
Around the time of our move, the COVID pandemic happened, changing the way we're doing classes at the Finishing School for Modern Women forever. Now our live classes are offered online and in-person at the same time so everyone can play!
When I started thinking about this, I liked the juxtaposition between what Finishing Schools once were, compared to what women really need now; not because we need finishing, but because we’re never finished. We offer a wide variety of classes, based on feminine perspectives, all with a creative twist. While the classes are designed for women, all genders are welcome at the Finishing School for Modern Women.
Our co teachers are experts in their field, and include therapists, career counselors, organizational specialists and other professionals. To keep things fun and interesting, classes are interactive and discussion based, using adult learning techniques to make the experience more meaningful. Each class has an icon, we make into collectable “badges,” and award during a graduation ceremony at the end of class.
These are not your grandmother’s etiquette classes. My goal in the Finishing School for Modern Women is to empower women of all ages to come together to learn from each other through open, candid conversations. To pass on the skills women need to claim their power to live a happier and more successful life. To help women realize more confidence through knowledge that comes from community and shared experiences. For Modern Women to find their authentic selves and never finish the search for self-realization.
Thank you for helping make this dream come true,
Because We’re Never Finished
The Finishing School for Modern Women, located in Wichita, Kansas, offers classes to help women find their authentic selves; not because we need finishing, but because we’re never finished. We bring together women of all ages, to learn from experts and each other, how to claim our power in business, finance, communication, and life.
To learn more about our in-person and online classes
https://www.finishingschoolformodernwomen.com for our classes and free social membership.
Phone: 316-841-8927 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org