Barton School Receives $300,000 Gift to Continue Widener Global Leadership Program

After two years of success, the Widener Global Leaders Program led by the W. Frank Barton School of Business will continue for the next five years. The continuation of the program is made possible by a $300,000 gift from Peri Widener, the visionary behind the program. WGLP is an interdisciplinary program designed to create a transformational experience and foster an inclusive community for women majoring in business, communications and fine arts. The integration of the three disciplines reflects the skillset of Peri Widener, who utilized her background to thrive in the international business world.

“I am so proud this program has been received so well by the community and is making a difference in the lives of the students we developed over the past two years,” said Widener, CEO of GLoBIL Consulting Group, a Director of the International Women’s Forum Global Board and a member of the Barton School Dean’s Advisory Board. “With this vital support, we can continue to create a movement for the next generation of female leaders.”

The program is led by the W. Frank Barton School of Business in collaboration with the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the College of Fine Arts at Wichita State University. Throughout the yearlong program, students develop business skills, communication skills, artistic awareness, a commitment to social responsibility, cultural intelligence, and a global mindset. They attend and have access to networking, mentorship, trips to industry-leading companies and connections to business, communication and artistic leaders. In just two years, WGLP has had 16 students participate. Going forward, these alumnae will serve as Big Sisters, mentoring the new cohorts as the program’s community expands.

“The growth of each cohort has been so wonderful to witness,” said Dr. Larisa Genin, Dean of the Barton School and WGLP Program Director. “This has been a massive success and with another substantial gift from Peri Widener, our work to empower and enlighten hundreds of women leaders can blossom.”

The application process for the 2023-24 WGLP cohort is now open. Interested applicants should submit resume along with a statement of interest by June 30, 2023. Visit to apply.