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Diversity and Inclusion

20th Annual WellsLink Transitions Ceremony and Keynote Speaker: Jenn Harper

February 16, 2024 at 4:00pm6:00pm EST

Hendricks Chapel

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Join us for the 20th Annual WellsLink Transitions Ceremony featuring this year’s keynote speaker, Jenn Harper. A reception will follow the ceremony. Please RSVP by Friday, Feb. 9, 2024.

WellsLink Leadership Program

The WellsLink Leadership Program is a nationally recognized academic excellence and leadership program for first-year students of color. Through structured academic, social and cultural enrichment activities, WellsLink scholars develop the leadership capital necessary for exceptional success at Syracuse University and beyond. The Transitions Ceremony is a formal ceremony honoring WellsLink Scholars from the previous year who have successfully transitioned to their second year at Syracuse University.

Keynote Speaker Jenn Harper

An award-winning social entrepreneur, Jenn Harper is the founder and CEO of Cheekbone Beauty Cosmetics Inc. Cheekbone Beauty is a digitally native direct-to-consumer brand that is helping Indigenous youth see themselves in a beauty brand while using the concept of Life Cycle Thinking (LCT) in the brand’s ethos and in developing products, creating a new segment in the beauty industry—Sustainable Socially Conscious Beauty.

Jennifer Harper has been making a name for herself in the beauty industry for a number of years, but has been gaining popularity quickly after being on the hit CBC show “Dragons’ Den” in 2019. Cheekbone Beauty’s mission is to help every Indigenous youth see and feel their enormous value in the world while creating sustainable cosmetics.

Cheekbone Beauty is a B Corp Certified company committed to meeting and exceeding high standards of transparency, employee benefits and charitable giving, not only to staff, but also to supply chain practices. During Cheekbone Beauty’s infancy, Jenn endured a heavy personal loss with the suicide of her brother B.J. This loss, though difficult, has remained a driving force behind the desire to see Cheekbone Beauty succeed with its mission, to empower Indigenous youth.

In addition to Cheekbone’s mission, Jenn strives to educate as many people as possible about the Residential School System and the effects it has had on her family and friends through decades of generational trauma. She speaks regularly to high school and college students about social entrepreneurship, empathy and the history of her First Nations family. She has also been invited to speak to various entrepreneur groups, women in business associations, Apple Canada and First Nations organizations.

In 2019, Jenn was named “Women of the Year” by Chatelaine magazine. She made the “100 Women of Influence” list by Entrepreneur magazine, alongside Jennifer Lopez and Kim Kardashian, in 2022. In 2023, Jenn received an honorary doctorate degree from Brock University for her commitment to sustainability and commitment to her community.

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This event was first published on December 7, 2023 and last updated on February 5, 2024.

Event Details