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Education Powering Evolution in Opportunities for Women in Business
Executive dean at Forbes School of Business discusses the role of women in today's workplace

SAN DIEGO, Oct. 20, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Women's roles in the world of business have evolved over time. Once consigned to administrative and support staff capacities, more and more women are succeeding in leadership positions, where their operational/task efficiency and management/leadership finesse have made them valuable assets to corporations around the world. According to Dr. Patricia Ryan, interim executive dean for the Forbes School of Business at Ashford University, the key element that is driving this change is education.

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"As a successful business woman in the business world before transitioning to academia, education was what gave me the leg up over my competitors," said Dr. Ryan. "Not only do you learn foundational business practices and theories, but most importantly, you learn structure, time management, deadlines, and strategy. The business infrastructure can be a game and unless you learn how to play it with the confidence of your business knowledge and content behind you, stronger personalities will step over you."

Dr. Ryan says women bring a balance of thought to the business world that integrates both the emotional/sensitive side of the brain with the cognitive/rational side for more effective and objective decision making. "In any successful business, you need to have a balance of thought in order to make good decisions that could have wide-reaching implications. Women bring a whole host of wonderful skills to the decision-making process that might otherwise be single-focused/minded."

When women succeed in business, they have a positive impact on the lives of young women breaking into the business world behind them. "Seeing women in high-ranking roles provides role models for young girls and women who in the past only had Barbie and June Cleaver," said Dr. Ryan. "As the markets and economy have shifted, so too has the need for greater numbers in the work force which has provided women greater opportunity to fill the demand and thus show their contribution and leadership value. With new initiatives focusing on industries that women have not historically gravitated toward – science, technology, engineering, and math – young girls will be encouraged more to use their full potential."

Women, working mothers in particular, still make sacrifices in order to be successful in the business world, but this should not be a deterrent. "Women are very good at finding balance in ways to make things work. If the ambition and enthusiasm for a career is there, a way will be found," said Dr. Ryan.

To learn more about women in business and Ashford University, be sure to visit Ashford's social media page and watch this video on YouTube.

About Ashford University
Where heritage meets innovation – that's Ashford University. At Ashford, students discover relevant degree programs, innovative technology, and cherished tradition. Ashford offers associates, bachelor's, and master's online degree programs, while the Clinton, Iowa campus offers bachelor's programs. Whether on campus or online, Ashford students enjoy the same supportive community. For more information, please visit,,, or call Shari Winet, Vice President of Public Relations, at 858.513.9240 x2513.

About Dr. Patricia Ryan
Dr. Patricia A. Ryan is Interim Executive Dean of the Forbes School of Business at Ashford University. Dr. Ryan was instrumental in the creation and development of Ashford University's Institutional Review Board (IRB) and was appointed to the position of Chair by the Provost. She holds a bachelor's in psychology from Siena College, a master's in public administration from California State University, Northridge, and a doctorate in business specializing in organization and management from Capella University.

Contact: Shari Winet, Vice President of Public Relations
858.513.9240 x2513 ·

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SOURCE Ashford University