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Research Center For Women and Girls

How can we create more opportunities for women and girls and work for greater gender equality, creating a better community for all?
Those goals are the driving force behind the Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls (RCWG). Founded in 1970, the RCWG generates and applies research, develops curricula, prepares evaluation tools and conducts outreach for the purpose of supporting and inspiring initiatives to improve the lives of women and girls locally and nationally.

Explore the latest from the Research Center

Women in Public Life

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of the Research Center for Women and Girls and the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, we are conducting an updated version of the first RCWG report: Wisconsin Women in Public Life. This survey is intended to better understand women's pathway to office in Wisconsin in order to develop strategies and tell the stories of women's success in elected office.

Click here to download the 2020-2021 Women in Public Life Research Brief.


"The Research Center for Women and Girls has a responsibility to be a voice that represents the binds many women and girls face as a result of the intersection of their identities, and it must participate in local, national and international conversations about what it means to be a marginalized human and what it means to be a human who has an equal opportunity for a life of authenticity, happiness and well-being."

— Lindsey Harness, PhD, director of the Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls

Our services

The Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls is proud to partner with other institutions of higher education, K-12 schools, nonprofit organizations and other groups. We offer the following services:

Our curricula equip educators and community organizations to address issues that impact women and girls, strengthening our capacity to be a resource to the community.

Past examples of our work include:

Anti-Bullying Behavior Curriculum: Changing Climate and Culture in Our Schools by Identifying, Preventing, and Confronting Bullying Behavior  
Curriculum Writer: Nancy Athanasiou, EdD
Our curriculum assists educators who work with middle and high school students to understand and address issues created by bullying behavior in their schools and communities.

PEARLS for Teen Girls Self-Development Curriculum
‌Curriculum Team: Nancy Athanasiou, EdD; Kayla Fraley, BSE; Amy Westmoreland, MEd; select PEARLS staff and alums.
The Research Center partnered with Milwaukee nonprofit PEARLS for Teen Girls to update its self-development curriculum.

Sleepovers Discussion Guide
Curriculum Writer: Desiree Pointer Mace, PhD
The Research Center created a discussion guide for Laj Waghray’s documentary film Sleepovers. Featured at the Milwaukee Film Festival, Sleepovers chronicles the lives of four girls from adolescence to young adulthood. The discussion guide provides a chance for the audience to further analyze the film and engage in an informative discussion.

The Power of Words: Bullying Behavior Prevention Training
Curriculum Writer: Nancy Athanasiou, EdD
This training guide was developed to facilitate a conversation about bullying behavior with elementary students. Training objectives include: raising awareness about the power of words and providing a safe atmosphere for participants to share their experiences.

For more information about our curricula, please contact us at

The Alverno College Research Center for Women and Girls is a resource to facilitate organization and program evaluation. Past clients include:

The Research Center developed a pre- and post-program assessment for ‌Power2Thrive, a program created by The Women’s Tree, that pairs up women and girls with the objective of creating natural mentoring relationships and developing future leaders.

PEARLS for Teen Girls
The Research Ce‌nter, in collaboration with the Alverno Educational Research and Evaluation department, responded to the evaluation needs of PEARLS for Teen Girls, a nonprofit leadership development organization serving youth aged 10 to 19.  The first phase of the evaluation answered basic trend questions about growth in the number of girls enrolling in and completing one or more semesters in the PEARLS program. The report established how many girls were meeting program goals and addressed differences across types of program sites and the girls’ backgrounds. The second phase focused on evaluating the organization’s in-house data management system and offering particular support in relation to its plans to build internal program evaluator and assessment capacity, while at the same time retaining the services of an expert external evaluation firm.

For more information about our evaluation services, please contact us at

Past research reports can be accessed here.

Support our work

Will you help us create a more equitable world?

We rely on generous donors like you to support our research, curriculum development and events and outreach initiatives. Your gift supports our goals to raise awareness about issues that impact the lives of women and girls and identify strategies to address these issues.

Make your gift today by contacting Laura Bolger, Alverno College Major Gifts Officer, at or 414-382-6095. You can also give online via this form — please use the comments section to designate the Research Center for Women and Girls as the recipient of your gift.

Thank you for supporting the Research Center!

Get in touch

We invite you to get in touch to learn more about our work.

Lindsey Harness
Executive Director of the Research Center for Women and Girls
Alverno College
3400 South 43rd Street
P.O. Box 343922
Milwaukee, WI 53234

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