Certificate in Women’s Leadership

The Certificate in Women’s Leadership is a 3-month course designed for professionals who wish to develop skills and practices for advancing women in the workplace and working towards gender equity. 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.

Topics covered:

  • Leadership & Identity
  • Emotional Intelligence
  • Gender and Communication
  • Overcoming the Confidence Gap
  • Work-Life Integration
  • Compensation & Negotiation
'I could never have imagined how much this program would impact my professional career.  The facilitators, content, and cohort will be pivotal in your transformation.' - Lauren St. John, Spring 2021 Graduate

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 healthy, fulfilling work-life integration.

Course format & dates

Instructor: Julie Kelsey, M.B.A.

Fall 2022 Cost: $3,200*


  • *A 30%-off scholarship is automatically granted to anyone employed by a 501c3 non-profit or government agency (includes public education and military employees).
  • *Scholarships are also available on a case-by-case basis. To be considered for a scholarship, submit an enrollment form first  and then complete a scholarship application. Scholarship applications must be submitted by June 1st for Fall programs and by November 1st for Winter/Spring programs. 
  • Note: Federal aid is not available for this program. Gonzaga employee tuition waiver does not apply.

How to enroll:

No application required, and no payment required at time of enrollment. Students must have five (5) years of any type of work experience or an undergraduate degree. Students admitted on a first-come, first-serve basis, subject to meeting aforementioned criteria. 


  • Upon completion, students receive a Certificate from Gonzaga University and eight (8) Continuing Education credits on a Gonzaga University transcript.
  • Students who successfully complete a School of Leadership Studies certificate program have the option applying a maximum of three (3) credits towards completion of a Masters in Organizational Leadership or Masters in Communication and Leadership at Gonzaga, contingent upon admission.

Want to learn more?

Email Rachelle Strawther, Director of the Center for Lifelong Learning, with questions 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.