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The Penn State Commission for Women logo includes a stylized cursive W with swirls around it on a pastel watercolor background.

Supporting women in Hershey, Pa.

Penn State Commission for Women in Hershey extends a warm welcome to all employees and students affiliated with Penn State Health, Penn State College of Medicine and Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.

Commission for Women seeks to promote women’s initiatives in the areas of equity, maternity and child/elder care concerns, mentoring, professional development and recognition, strengthening networking and social connections and workplace safety.

There is no requirement for membership, and all employees of Penn State Hershey Medical Center, its affiliates and the College of Medicine are encouraged to join, regardless of gender.

Become a member today

Learn more about CFW

Penn State Commission for Women in Hershey seeks to promote the efforts of faculty, staff, trainees and students affiliated with Penn State College of Medicine and Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center to allow for the full and equitable participation, advancement and collaboration of women by identifying and resolving issues pertinent to women on the Hershey campus.

In addition, a key focus of the Commission for Women is to identify and actively support women’s needs within the broader community.

The group was organized in 2011 as the Organization for the Advancement of Women, and in 2015 was recognized as an officially supported campus organization in Hershey.

Learn more about the group’s history See bylaws
A head-and-shoulders professional photo of Terri Smith

Terri Smith

Current Chair: Terri Smith (2023-2024)

Terri Smith is a certified clinical research coordinator with the Neuroscience Institute. Terri has been with Penn State for seven years and involved in the Commission for Women for just as long, holding multiple executive positions. In her free time, she enjoys visiting the beach, shopping for antiques, baking and spoiling her dogs.

See all current CFW Executive Committee members


  • Raz Abdulqadir (2024-2025)

Past chairs

  • Jennifer Nyland (2022-2023)
  • Jaime Bashore Long (2021-2022)
  • Jessica Yingst (2020-2021)
  • Julie Gill (2019-2020)
  • Penny Devlin (2018-2019)
  • Lidija Petrovic-Dovat (2017-2018)
  • Catherine Caruso (2016-2017)
  • Mary Leone (2015-2016)
  • Lisa Walborn (2014-2015)
  • Maria Baker (2013-2014)
  • Soha Ghossani (2012-2013)
  • Patricia Sue Grigson (founder)

The mentoring program of Penn State Commission for Women in Hershey is designed to enhance professional and personal development among faculty, staff and technical-service employees by connecting them with others who can provide advice on a variety of work-related issues, including career planning, job skill enhancement and campuswide involvement.

See mentoring program details

The Commission for Women presents two annual awards – the 3C Award and the Mentoring Award.

3C Award

Since 2013, Penn State Commission for Women’s 3C Award has recognized the significant effort of an individual, regardless of gender, whose work and volunteer efforts have impacted the advancement of women within or outside the University in the areas of commitment, community and change. The award is open to all faculty, staff, fellows, trainees and students, regardless of gender.

Calls for this award occur early each year, with the winner announced in March during Women’s History Month.

Learn more and view award recipients

Mentoring Award

The Penn State Commission for Women Mentoring Award recognizes faculty, staff and trainees for exemplary and effective mentorship. The award recognizes a mentor who has voluntarily helped others to reach their potential professionally and personally.

Calls for this award occur in early spring, with the winner announced at the CFW General Assembly.

Learn more and view award recipients

Throughout the year, the Commission for Women holds a variety of events for its members and all interested colleagues, students and trainees.

Events are developed with the CFW mission in mind of addressing women’s issues and needs within the internal and external community of Penn State Health and Penn State College of Medicine.

Recordings of select past events can be viewed on Mediasite (Penn State Health ePass login required).

See upcoming meetings and events

In 2017, Penn State Commission for Women in Hershey conducted a climate survey to discern issues of importance and satisfaction with campus resources.In total, 1,535 Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and College of Medicine employees and students completed the survey.

See 2017 climate survey results

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Commission for Women committees

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See more Commission for Women events