Summer Course: Contemporary Women’s Leadership Institute


Program Description

Empower undergraduate women with education and confidence for leadership, at the place where thousands of accomplished women began their path.

As one of the world’s preeminent colleges for women, Wellesley is pleased to offer the Contemporary Women’s Leadership Institute – an immersive approach to personal leadership and success.

Wellesley is proud of its strong history of educating female leaders from around the world, across all industries and walks of life. Wellesley's ability to mold the next generation of female leaders comes from its own investment in gender equality and women's empowerment. At Wellesley, we have a high percentage of female-tenured faculty, a history of only female presidents, and countless opportunities for young women to engage in student leadership roles. In this environment, students discover in themselves unparalleled possibilities. The Wellesley Contemporary Women's Leadership Institute offers the Wellesley experience -- incredible faculty and classes, supportive mentoring, and lasting friendships -- in a five-week, life-changing journey.

During this intensive, five-week program that is unique, you will live and study at Wellesley College. Through challenging classroom education, self-reflective activities, and unique social interactions, undergraduates from around the world will gather to continue on their personal leadership path.

Five weeks, A World of Difference

  • Join the community living in a historic residence hall, with full access to campus life and amenities.
  • Earn college credit and learn about gender inequality, women’s leadership, and workplace challenges from Wellesley’s accomplished full-time faculty in intimate class settings.
  • Gain practical real-world insights through conversations and networking with women leaders from a broad array of industries including financial services, marketing, non-profit and entertainment.
  • Understand leadership and gender from an intersectional vantage point, studying with a diverse group of students from around the world.
  • Engage in reflective activities to gain insight into personal leadership strengths, styles and development opportunities.
  • Explore Boston & beyond from Wellesley College’s campus, located just 30 minutes away from historic Boston & Cambridge, as well as a short train ride from NYC.

To hear what past Wellesley summer students have experienced in the Contemporary Women's Leadership Institute, watch the Summer 2017 Student Reflections video. (Coming Soon)

At A Glance

  • Program Length: 5 Weeks
  • Eligibility: Undergraduate women who are 18+ years of age who have completed at least one year of college study from the US and international colleges/universities, and still in college.
  • Courses: Introduction to Women’s and Gender Studies (WGST 120), and Organizational Psychology (PSYC 340). Note: classes subject to change
  • Credits: All courses are credit/non-credit
  • Residential Hall: Historic Stone-Davis Residence Hall
  • Total Program Fee: $5,600 (Tuition) + $3,350 (Room, Board, and Activities) = $8,950

A Typical Day

  • 8 AM: Breakfast
  • 9 AM: Morning Class
  • 11 AM: Lunch
  • 2 PM: Afternoon Class
  • 5 PM - 6 PM: Free Time (homework, trip to the Ville)
  • 6 PM: Dinner and Lecture by Guest Speaker
  • 7 PM: Residential Life Staff Planned Program
  • 8 PM: Free Time

Contemporary Women's Leadership Academic Courses

Engage in four weeks of intensive, academic study related to leadership, gender and diversity in the workplace. During weeks 1-4, Wellesley’s full-time faculty members will provide rigorous classroom instruction through women's leadership-oriented courses. As a student in the Wellesley Contemporary Women's Leadership Institute, you will experience the same quality of instruction that Wellesley undergraduates receive during the academic year. For those who wish to transfer credits from Wellesley, please consult in advance with the Registrar of your college or university.

Introduction to Women's and Gender Studies (WGST 120)

Introduction to the interdisciplinary field of women's and gender studies with an emphasis on an understanding of the "common differences" that both unite and divide women. Beginning with an examination of how womanhood has been represented in myths, ads, and popular culture, the course explores how gender inequalities have been both explained and critiqued. The cultural meaning given to gender as it intersects with race, class, ethnicity, and sexuality will be studied. Faculty: Elena Creef, Ph.D., Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies.

Organizational Psychology (PSYC 340)

This course focuses on human behavior at work and in other organizations. An examination of key topics, such as the social environment of the workplace, motivation and morale, change and conflict, quality of work life, work group dynamics, leadership, culture, and the impact of workforce demographics (gender, race, socioeconomic status). Experiential activities, cases, theory, and research. Faculty: Linda Carli, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer in Psychology.

Contemporary Women's Leadership Experiential Week

Through discussion-based seminars, engaging keynote speakers, and hands-on learning, you will discover different types of leadership styles as you begin to craft your own.

Past opportunities have included:

  • Leadership/entrepreneurship panel on working in marketing and media.
  • Innovative seminars on using networking tools for business on Wellesley's 9-hole course.
  • Leadership assessments – the LPI. Reflective journaling activity.
  • Alumnae journey panel, women in finance who are making a difference in the world.
  • Service learning workshop and volunteer time.
  • Mentoring/Coaching with the President/CEO of a leading Boston Non-Profit Company
  • TV and Radio Personality Keynote: Nice Girls can Win! Exploration: Forging Your Future
Last updated Oct 2018

About the School

The world’s preeminent college for women, Wellesley is known for intellectual rigor, its belief in the enduring importance of service (and putting that belief into practice), and its cultivation in st ... Read More

The world’s preeminent college for women, Wellesley is known for intellectual rigor, its belief in the enduring importance of service (and putting that belief into practice), and its cultivation in students of an inclusive, pragmatic approach to leadership. Read less