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About will

will is a four-year program that actively develops students’ intellectual and leadership skills, allowing students to excel in their chosen fields and realize their full potential. will provides opportunities for women, transgender, and gender non-conforming students to explore the influence of gender and other identities both in their own lives and in society more broadly.  

will uses a theory-to-practice model to help students apply their academic coursework to real-world situations through internships, leadership opportunities, activism projects, and diversity events. Students take classes together, develop close friendships, and engage in contemporary human rights struggles.

will combines the following central features:

  • Academic Foundation: A minor in Women, Gender and Sexuality Studies (WGSS), which provides the academic foundation of the program. Part of the minor includes the course Gender and Work and a supervised internship, both of which prepare students for the world of work. 
  • Leadership Opportunitieswill students take part in will’s student leadership organization and present research at conferences. will encourages and supports student initiatives.
  • Activismwill enables students to draw on a strong base of support to stand up for their beliefs and put their WGSS knowledge into practice both on campus and in the Richmond community. will students create positive social change.
  • Communitywill students form deep connections and close friendships with one another over the course of four years. They volunteer together, share coursework, and attend will’s annual Speaker Serieswill students form community and make the most of their education.  
  • Career Preparationwill takes career preparation seriously. Students learn to translate their academic experience into job preparation by working closely with Career Services and participating in a series of skills-building workshops, including salary negotiation, budgeting, op-ed writing, and public speaking. Additionally, will's supervised internship prepares students for the world of work.

By participating in these components of the will program, students find a supportive and intellectually challenging community; develop close friendships with other students; meet with scholars and activists in small group settings; and interact with faculty and staff mentors across the university. Students leave will with their eyes wide open and ambitions high, equipped with the awareness, confidence, and experience to effectively guide their visions for a better world.

Application Deadlines

Submit summer applications by Aug. 1 to take advantage of an expedited early admission process. Summer admits begin the will program shortly after arrival on campus.

Fall applications are due Oct. 1.

Alum Voices

"will helped me identify my work. And when I say work, I don't mean only my career or my profession, but also how I fit into the world and what I can give back to the world." —Jennifer Stolarski, Esq., will Class of 1996