Women for Educational Achievement


Post-secondary education enrollment figures for Utah women have steadily declined since the early 1990’s, a trend that has resulted in Utah ranking 26th in the nation for higher education completion by women. The gap between male and female’s attaining four-year college degrees in Utah has grown to 6 percent. No other state is even close to a gap this size. This reality has severe consequences on our state’s economy and families. In fact, due to lower education levels, women in Utah currently earn only 69 cents for every dollar men earn— the highest disparity rate in the nation.

WLC Takes Action

United Way of Salt Lake Women’s Leadership Council (WLC) is working to ensure that girls and women of all ages have the opportunity to recognize their potential through education. Members of the WLC help empower girls and teens to create a brighter and more prosperous future for themselves and their families. Women for Educational Achievement efforts focus on the following goals, objectives, and strategies:


  • Elementary school students achieve on grade level in reading and math by third grade
  • Middle school students will be actively engaged in their education
  • High school graduation rates will measurably improve
  • College graduation/post-secondary completion will be a major area of focus


  • Influence individuals and cultural factors impacting success in the education system
  • Support a curriculum that highlights college/post-secondary education
  • Address financial issues that impact the ability to pursue college/post-secondary education
  • Coordinate/collaborate with other local constituents who are active in promoting education in our community


Initially, implement a pilot program in South Salt Lake that will focus on:

  • Awareness building
  • Mentoring
  • Parent engagement/involvement



  The majority of those with
  school-age children work 

  Utah has a higher divorce 
  rate than the national 

  Almost one-third of female-
  headed households live in

  A young woman today can
  expect to spend 30 years in
  the labor force

  Most women at one time or
  another will need to support
  themselves and their families    


  Live longer, give birth to
  healthier babies, and have
  healthier children

  Are involved in the political
  process and are involved in
  their community and vote

  Are better prepared to 
  support themselves and
  their families

  Are more confident, less

  Have improved judgment
  and reasoning

  Maintain higher ethical and
  moral standard

  Experience an increased
  quality of life

  Take leadership roles

  Department of Workforce Services
  Georgetown University Center on  
  Education & Workforce

  Utah Women and Education


Women’s Leadership Council members are passionate about improving the lives of women in our community. Please join us and LIVE UNITED!
For more information contact Zenia Frendt at zenia@uw.org, or 801.736.7704.

Read the latest research about Utah women and higher education:

Brief #1: Utah Women and Education Research and Policy Brief (January 26, 2010): "The Value of Higher Education for Women in Utah"

Brief #2: Utah Women and Education Research and Policy Brief (May 25, 2010):"Women and Higher Education in Utah: A Glimpse at the Past and Present"


Specialized Educational Resource Lists for Utah Women:

CLICK HERE to browse our lists of specialized educational resources available for your particular school.

Utah Women and Education initiative:

UWEI LogoThe Utah Women and Education Initiative: Supporting the goal of 66% of Utahns aged 20-64 having a postsecondary certificate or degree by the year 2020.

Learn more >>

Making College a Priority


In Their Own Words


Pieces of the Puzzle

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