Though both graduated from Staples High School — Caela McCann in 2011, Alexis Teixeira 2 years later — and now attend Boston College, they did not know each other. They finally met last year, at a meeting of BC Women in Business.
Caela was vice president. She loved Alexis’ enthusiasm, and became her mentor. The friendship grew as they worked together on major projects, including a leadership retreat and networking events. Caela became president. Alexis — who is also director of female and gender affairs for the BC’s undergraduate government — was secretary.
Both women had big plans. Over the summer, they hatched a huge one: a women’s summit, called Own It!
The idea — based on a similar event at Georgetown University — was to celebrate women’s leadership. They’d bring together students looking to gain knowledge and skills, while providing plenty of interaction between speakers and attendees. Twenty campus organizations quickly signed on to help.
It was an enormous undertaking. Alexis — the conference chair — built an organizing team of 34 students. She oversees everything from alumni and speakers to police, food and marketing.
Caela — the conference’s executive director — handles contracts, finances and university liaison.
On Sunday, March 29, the 8-hour “Own It!” summit will feature workshops, breakout sessions, lectures, interviews, and social events with BC alumni, students, faculty and guests. The “day of celebration, learning and empowerment” is highlighted by 2 keynote addresses, from Kate White (former editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan) and Carrie Rich (founder and CEO of the Global Good Fund).
Tickets sold out in 1 day. And yes. men are invited.
The 2 organizers have long been leaders. At Staples, Caela was president of the Teen Awareness Group. Alexis captained both the swimming and tennis teams, and was a co-founder and president of Teen Vital Voices, a club that empowers women leaders in developing nations.
Now, Caela is a Hispanic studies major, and management and leadership minor. Alexis is double majoring in finance, and management and leadership.
They lead busy lives. But whenever they’re home on breaks, the 2 women — who graduated from the same school, without knowing each other — hang out together.
And plan their next empowering moves.