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Boundless - a unique programme that supports young women in their professional lives

Here you can find the answers to the frequently asked questions regarding our Boundless program.


three women with flowers
Self-development with no boundaries

Why young women?

Skills and …. are not divided into male or female. What is divided is our freedom to express them. “For example, society is prone to reward men for being ambitious or assertive, however, when it comes to women, these qualities are not considered to be beneficial. On the other hand, women are expected to be gentle or emotional, but there are very few occasions on which men are rewarded for such qualities. Such a stereotypical viewpoint influences your people, who are then scared to express themselves freely, which means that they are often restricted from fulfilling their potential.” explains Ivana Uličná, the founder of the Hekima organization. In a professional life, in addition to mastering skills, women must learn to cope with stereotypes and double standards. The most striking evidence is that in Slovakia they earn 18-21% less than men. Although equality is one of the fundamental values ​​of the European Union, to which Slovakia belongs, it is not a matter of certainty for women, in all areas of life. The results of the European Social Probe show that the self-confidence of girls in Slovakia is among the lowest. It decreases during adolescence and the condition persists into adulthood, when it significantly affects their professional and private lives. This situation is a consequence of gender stereotypes persisting in families, in the workplace and in society as a whole. "It is necessary to talk about these issues and create conditions that will allow women to thrive to their full potential, to be aware of their value, and to also be valued not just by themselves but also the society, that they enrich by their abilities.” says Uličná.

What is the goal of this project?

The project creates a community of young female leaders that are ready to be the power of a positive change in the society, no matter which path they choose. That's why it's called Boundless, without boundaries - to make young women aware of their enormous potential, to develop their professional skills and to free them from self-limiting beliefs or social stereotypes. And if they have to face them one day, they can identify and approach them effectively. Boundless invites young women on an adventurous journey that will strengthen their self-confidence and lead them to develop key professional skills, such as leadership, effective and strong branding, assertiveness, presentation and communication skills, critical and analytical thinking, etc.

What does the program offer?

First and foremost, Boundless brings a unique intensive 5-day educational program, but also lectures at schools and webinars. The program is based on professional studies in leadership, neuroscience and effective education. It uses a methodology developed in close cooperation with the University of Michigan and the know-how of experienced and respected experts from Slovakia and abroad. The design of the program is based on academic studies that confirm the importance of role models in professional and personal life. The program is designed to encourage young women to self-reflect and to reflect on society surrounding them. They will have the opportunity to talk to professionals about their experiences and to create effective plans to meet their goals.

Who will accompany the participants?

In an informal and friendly environment, top experts from respected firms, media, the state sector and civil society from Slovakia and abroad, will share their experiences. Participants can look forward to Adela Vincze, who will introduce them to the topic of self-acceptance and self-worth. The topic of leadership will be covered by HR expert from the University of Michigan, Julie Felker. The President's personal secretary, Veronika Gulášová, will teach them how to accept challenges and set concrete steps for achieving the desired results. Mrs Magda Vášáry will talk about the importance of cohesion. Communication strategy expert Maroš Kemény will share with the young women how to sell in the labor market and succeed in the face of strong competition. CEO of the platform Profesia, Ivana Molnárová, will share strategies on how to overcome fear. The participants will also meet with civic activist Zuzana Wienk, who will tell them about courage and about how to create a positive social change. Anna Plassat Muríňová, Ambassador and Delegate of UNESCO in Paris, will guide young women on diplomacy and conducting negotiations. Fero Pauliny will teach them how to public speak effectively. Ivana Uličná and the Hekima team will focus on effective strategies for dealing with double-standards, self-limiting beliefs, but also on how to write a CV that captures attention, or how to successfully do a job interview.

How to apply?

The program is designed for young women - university students, aged 18 - 25 years. It doesn't matter if they are introverts or extroverts, decisive or hesitant! It is important that they want to improve their skills and be part of an inspiring community. The Boundless Academy will take place on March 23-27, 2022 in Bratislava. Registration is open until February 20, 2022. More information and application form can be found at https://www.hekima.sk/boundless/. The programme is free. The organizers of the event will provide accommodation and meals for the participants.

What about the boys?

We believe that for most men in Slovakia, gender equality is an important value and that they want to be a part of moving forward and positive changes.They are natural and necessary partners. However, it often happens that neither we women, nor men, know what we can do as individuals in specific situations. In Hekima, it is important for us to build a dialogue on this issue between young people. Through various activities, we therefore try to connect them and spread awareness of what each and every one of us can do, "says Ivana Uličná. The Boundless program creates a safe space for female university students to develop their skills while discussing barriers, often sensitive and personal topics specific to women, and how to recognize and effectively address them. "We are very happy that, also in our program, we have positive male role models, who want to support them," adds Uličná.

Program was financially supported by The US Embassy in Slovakia and University of Michigan.


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