Certificate in Women’s Leadership

The Certificate in Women’s Leadership is a 3-month, non-degree course designed for professionals who wish to develop skills and practices for advancing women in the workplace.  Through online learning and an on-campus immersion, the course exposes students to research and studies regarding women in the workplace, as well as current readings and materials on the subject. Additionally, the course offers practical skills for overcoming common barriers facing women in the workplace.


This certificate program highlights the following areas of awareness and development:

  • Leadership & Identity
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Gender and Communication
  • Overcoming the Confidence Gap
  • Work-Life Integration
  • Compensation & Negotiation

    What you'll learn:

    • Gain tools and skills to navigate the unique dilemmas that working women face, such as “double-binds” and “unconscious bias.”
    • Understand one’s individual, unique leadership identity and how it surfaces in teams.
    • Enhance one’s emotional intelligence for greater effectiveness in leadership roles.
    • Develop skills to communicate and negotiate authentically and confidently in various situations.
    • Identify practices and attitudes that contribute to a healthy, fulfilling work-life balance.

    Course details & dates

    Instructor: Julie Kelsey, M.B.A.


    No application or payment is required at the time of enrollment. Students will receive bills after their registration is confirmed and prior to the start of the course. Please note that enrollment is first come, first serve and subject to meeting enrollment prerequisites described in the program details. To learn about scholarship opportunities, email Rachelle Strawther at strawther@gonzaga.edu


    Mike Gribner

    Regional Administrator, WSDOT

    "Gonzaga's Certificate in Women's Leadership program is a wonderful learning opportunity and not just for women leaders. As a male leader wanting to better understand what barriers and concerns women in our organization face, this training provided me the opportunity to spend some very personal time gaining understanding and texture around how best to become an ally in helping women succeed."

    Mary Miller

    Mary Miller

    Director of Slot Operations, Northern Quest Casino

    “I was hesitant to apply for this certificate class; the University’s prestige and list of alumni were intimidating. I was afraid of attending a class full of PhD and MBA educated women; although there may be few of those women in class, the diversity in education levels, generations, ethnic backgrounds and professions is incredible. I have learned so many strategies from the other women and the instructors. I feel like I’ve filled my tool bag and can get to work on my leadership skills.”

    Tiffany Van Heel

    Tiffany Van Heel

    Marketing Coordinator, Highgate Senior Living

    “From the start, the Women’s Leadership Certificate program, including the mind-blowing, on-campus immersion, has been one of the most powerful experiences that I have been through. I, along with my fellow colleagues, have been empowered with immediately usable tools, a strong network of support in like-minded-thinkers, and many “a-ha moments” that have resonated deeply. With high expectations after a stellar experience in Gonzaga’s Organizational Leadership graduate program, I can certainly say that Rachelle and Sherri have knocked this one out of the park. Our first cohort is already reveling in excitement for the next immersion!”

    Featured News

    Building allies and bridging divides

    Rachelle Strawther, Director of the Office of Leadership Training and Development and Women Lead co-founder, discusses lessons learned in our Women's Leadership Certificate - by both men and women.

    Interest in Gonzaga’s Women Lead initiative grows

    Director of the Office of Leadership Training and Development and Women Lead co-founder, discusses certificate course boosting skills, accelerating advancement, and creating change.