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Joya Woodard, Founding President of Women Connecting Women

Whether it’s a late night studying at the UGL, working at University of Illinois Foundation or strutting her stuff in a suit and heels for a meeting, Joya Woodard never stops hustling. Along with two of her friends, this aspiring CEO started her own campus organization, Women Connecting Women (WCW). It’s just one of the many accomplishments under this sophomore’s belt. Along with acting as the President of WCW, Woodard is also involved with several other clubs, like the NAACP chapter on campus, Central Black Student Union, Illini Union Board and L.I.F.T camp. She loves helping others and has more in the works for the future, so look out U of I!
Her Campus: What is Women Connecting Women?
Joya Woodard: WCW is a new organization at University of Illinois with a vision to mold powerful women with leadership and service that challenges and rejects the common image of minority women in our society. The purpose is to embed the idea of outreach and mentorship for generations to come.
HC: Tell us about how you founded this registered student organization.
JW: With the help of my two friends, Dayneeia Thrash and Tiffany Cox, we combined a lot of ideas and by God’s will we were able to produce what is now WCW.
HC: Why is this organization important?
JW: This organization is important because the women on this campus do not have enough respect for one another. I believe that instead of working together, women on this campus are too busy competing against each other and in order for there to be a change there needs to be a starting point. 
HC: What are your goals for WCW?
JW: My ultimate goal for WCW is growth. Growth in our members, growth as a group of women, as well as growth on the number of people we have a positive impact on.
HC: What is your biggest challenge with WCW?
JW: The biggest challenge is that we’re new and we’re still learning, but we’re progressing as a group each meeting.
HC: How do you balance your academics while being involved in so many activities and having a social life?
JW: A lot of planning. I have a color coordinated planner and I would be lost without it.
HC: What is your favorite thing to do on campus?
JW: My favorite thing is walking across the quad when the colors of the leaves are changing. I really admire how beautiful our campus is.
HC: What is your ultimate goal in life?
JW: My ultimate life goal is to make the world a better place than how it was when I entered it. 
HC: What do you think is your greatest personal achievement thus far?
JW: My greatest achievement is getting into the University of Illinois. Getting accepted into this school has already opened so many doors for me and I haven’t even finished my work here yet.
Photos courtesy of Joya Woodard
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