ORONO, Maine (NEWS CENTER) — Dozens of college women gathered at the University of Maine on Saturday for the 3rd annual Elect Her workshop. For eight hours, these young women worked on sharpening their leadership skills in hopes that it will increase the number of women in politics.
Event organizer Mary Cathcart served in the Maine House and Senate for eight years. Now, inspiring younger women to become interested in politics has become her newest passion.
“I get excited and energetic from seeing young women step into leadership positions,” she said.
Cathcart said young women need to see a role model who’s broken through the glass ceiling.
Currently, one-in-five members of Congress are women. Cathcart and other Maine legislators hope to change that.
“I see every issue as a women’s issue, but I think a woman’s voice in an issue is really key," said state Rep. Michelle Dunphy, D-Old Town. "It’s about all of us in our community."
The event helped UMaine senior Eloise Melcher open her eyes to the world of politics.
“Getting women to jump over that first hurdle is the hardest one and the highest one," she said. "But I think once we get more women into it, it might make things easier. And they’ll see, 'oh I did it, other people can do it even if my opponent is a little mean to me.'”
Melcher hopes in the future there will be more females in Congress.
Another UMaine leadership event will take place in June. For more information on how to sign up, click here.