Past Pathfinder Recaps


We cannot fully express what an amazing week Pathfinder is! To view photos of the wonderful week click here. Thirty plus amazing young women join us for future planning, networking, relationship building, and more. The participants spent time in the GEN office and also engaged in professional site visits around the city.

My favorite day was Friday. After hearing from a panel of women entrepreneurs, we sat down for a networking luncheon. So much support was flowing from mentors and the Pathfinders – it was inspiring to watch and listen. When I asked the staff and other interns what they took away from the summit, these were the responses:

“Pathfinder was an incredible opportunity for these young women. I am so proud to have been a part of this program! I truly believe we formed meaningful relationships, provided relatable role models, enhanced their lives overall, and will ultimately have a hand in positively shaping their futures!”

Hannah, Pathfinder intern

“I was very happy to see that they were being encouraged to dream big in high school and other experiences that helped them get an idea of what they wanted to do.”

Ava, Pathfinder intern

“In my mind, to be a good leader, you need to first have confidence in who you are and your abilities. Without this, its nearly impossible to take charge of a room or sell yourself to others in a job interview situations. So while I hope the girls left with a greater understanding of resume building and networking, I would find the program to be a larger success if the girls left the program with greater understanding of themselves. Feeling the support and confidence to chase after and achieve their goals.”

JJ, Project Management Intern

“I’ve worked with girls for 10 years, and I have never seen such concentration of knowledge, support, and process. I witnessed these girls gain life skills, confidence, and self-love in six short days. This program is the real deal!”

Caroline Crawford, Program Director

Through comparing pre- and post-surveys, we saw growth in each students confidence, networking skills, and future planning. Additionally, post-surveys revealed the following outcomes:


said ‘Because of this program…’

‘I feel more confident in my ability to be a leader’

‘I know more ways to manage my stress’

‘I felt bonded with the other girls in Pathfinder’



the summit exceeded their expectations

‘I feel comfortable working with people who are different than me’

‘I would recommend this program to a friend’



‘I feel confident about interviewing for a job’

‘I feel comfortable with public speaking’

‘I am confident in my ability to sell who I am to others’

Thank you to all participants! The students were nothing short of a joy to see every day, and the support we experienced throughout the community and at our events was truly amazing. If you donated a scholarship, attended a mentoring session, presented at the summit, or sent your daughter to Pathfinder, thank you from the bottom of our hearts. It goes without saying that we could not have had a successful event without you! We would like to extend a special thanks to our Giving Circle members:

Christine Cox Reinauer (Co-chair), Myndi Garrett (Co-Chair), Rebecca Austen, Bonnie Bain, Linda Benge, Yvette Boatwright, Kathy Burrell, Rhonda & John Dirvin, Loretta Fellers, Susan Gallagher, Horace Green, Melissa Greenwell, Christine Horne, Celia Israel, Susan Jones, Dana Marruffo, Leslie Martinich, Emily Moreland, Dave & Margee Shearer, The Smalling Family, Maura Thomas, Kay Wilemon, Lisa Wilson Graham, Bob Wynn

And many thanks to the following sites for hosting us:

Whole Foods Domain, Google Fiber, The Microsoft Domain Store, HomeAway, Austin City Hall

Contributed by: Kate Heetlan

“I was so impressed and inspired by everything and everyone this week! I don’t want to leave.” Arlette, 12th grade


“Talking to random people and engaging in a full conversation is hard, but without Pathfinder, I would have never done it.” Kaitlyn, 11th grade

“It’s great learning life skills and preparing for college…But the most helpful was the vibe – I really stepped out of my comfort zone” Annie, 11th grade

2015 Pathfinder

Highlighted outcomes from participant surveys:

  • 100% of girls said the program met or exceeded their expectations
  • 93% said that because of the program, their confidence level with life after high school has increased.
  • 100% said they now feel more comfortable with:
    • Their professional communication skills
    • Their leadership skills
    • Stress management
    • Time management
    • Working on a team

Overheard at Pathfinder:

“Pathfinder gave me a chance to have an intellectual conversation about my future with people I felt comfortable around. I learned so much valuable information!”

“This was absolutely incredible! I made lifetime friends who want the same things as me for the future.”

“The best thing was talking to women about their lives and careers. They were really nice and wanted to help me.”

“This provided me great insight about how to prepare myself for not only college but for having a happy, successful, independent adult life.”

Needless to say, we’re proud! And we owe thanks to everyone who pitched in! This special Leadership Summit wouldn’t have been possible without the incredible outpouring of support from our community.

From referring a participant, to sitting in on a focus group, to speaking with the girls, or donating a scholarship—we couldn’t have done it without you. Check out the stats and quotes below, and please accept our GENuine thanks!