Group photo of WLP participants

About Us

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The Women's Leadership Program promotes excellence in academic achievement, fosters strong community building and provides the framework upon which students can develop their own leadership identity.


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Group of WLP participants in front of the Washington Monument


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The Elizabeth J. Somers Women's Leadership Program (WLP) is a selective year-long living and learning program for first year students at the George Washington University. Offered exclusively at the Mount Vernon Campus, WLP commemorates and preserves the vision of the founder of Mount Vernon College and Seminary, Elizabeth J. Somers. WLP students have the benefit of small classes, close contact with faculty and women in leadership roles and strong community ties within the program.

The dynamic curriculum emphasizes exploration and development of advancing women in leadership through academic courses and a weekly interactive event, the WLP symposium. The WLP symposia offer special lectures, workshops and experiences that draw on the unique resources of Washington, D.C., and brings students together with leaders from many professional fields.

WLP is open to all students, regardless of gender, who share in the mission to support the advancement of women. Students live together in Somers Hall as a living and learning community. 

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Student Highlight

SJ Matthews



SJ Matthews Elected Student Association President for 2019-2020

SJ Matthews, who majors in classical studies in the Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, is a former WLP student. She won the runoff election with 66.6 percent of the vote. “I’m really excited to be an advocate for the students next semester as the next Student Association president,” Ms. Matthews said. “I really think we’re going to get a lot done.”

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