Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.). Women's Center
- Existence: 1986
Until 1986, the Northwestern Women's Center existed as the Program on Women, a research program on gender-related studies which had been established in 1974 by Northwestern University faculty. The Women's Center was created September 1, 1986. The name change reflected a change in organizational focus and an increase in service capabilities. The original mission statement indicates a commitment to educational, professional, and personal equality for all women through programs to help women make successful choices and to advocate for increased access to health, economic stability, justice, and systemic equality for Northwestern and community women.
The four program components of the Women's Center are Educational Programming; Career, Professional and Personal Counseling; Referrals and Resources; and Advocacy. Two early Center projects were the Campus Climate Project (CCP) and the Sexual Assault Education Program (SAEP). Based on the hypothesis that theatrical performance can facilitate cultural change, the CCP examines sexism and racism through workshops and performances. The SAEP organized freshman orientations, counselor training programs, speakers, and workshops, and furnished reference materials. The Center's resources include the Women's Collection in the University Library's Special Collections department. The Women's Center is funded by the University and by grants.
The first director of the Women's Center, June Terpstra, was hired September 2, 1986.