women's center title graphic

2010-2015 Strategic Plan

In the fall of 2009 a committee convened to develop a strategic plan for the Women's Center. The final plan is based on the results of assessment which included student, staff and faculty interviews, focus groups, and student surveys. The language in this strategic plan reflects the Center's name at the time of development. In fall 2012, our name changed to the Gender Equity Center, which is not used in this plan.

(Click on link to view explanation and objectives)


The Women's Center is committed to broadening our impact on student life, educational equity, and social justice at CSUSM. By increasing visibility of the center's programs and services, we will serve, engage, and empower an ever greater number of students. In addition, we will grow the center's influence to structurally engage with campus in creating systematic change.


Enhance digital communication to publicize Women’s Center services, programs, successes, and contributions to campus climate.
1.2 Establish collaborative relationship with First Year Programs and Student Orientation to outreach to incoming students.
1.3 Strengthen partnerships with key departments including Cougar Central, Student Life and Leadership, University Student Apartments, Student Health and Counseling Services, and Trio/SSOP for service, education, and outreach to students.
1.4 Increase physical visibility of Women’s Center through a relocation to a more central campus location.
1.5 Implement system for targeted outreach to students in Women’s Studies and Ethnic Studies, as well as in fields where women are underrepresented such as math and science.


Recent research has demonstrated that student mothers often need additional help to be successful at school, including career counseling, esteem building, and flexible on-campus childcare (Boushey & O'Leary, 2009). The Women’s Center plays an important role in integrating parents into student life at CSUSM, and is dedicated to enhancing student parent’s educational experience and success towards graduation.


Establish private lactation rooms on campus equipped with pumping equipment and milk storage.
2.2 Develop collaboration with the Center for Children and Families on campus to provide flexible and affordable part-time childcare to student parents.
2.3 Create “family friendly” environment in Women’s Center with safe spaces for children and parents to be in community.
2.4 Implement networking group for student parents on campus to give and receive emotional and practical support.
2.5 Develop system for annually receiving quantitative data on the numbers of student parents.
2.6 In collaboration with the Dean of Students office and Academic Affairs, establish processes and protocol for faculty working with students needing maternity leave.
2.7 Improve online and in-center resources and referrals for family planning, child-raising, and parenthood.  Create debagged on Women’s Center site dedicated to these information resources.


Thorough prevention strategies and intervention procedures for sexual assault and relationship abuse is critical in maintaining a learning environment that is physically and psychologically safe for students of all genders.  The Women’s Center is committed to improving and increasing direct services, administrative processes, and prevention education.


Strengthen and solidify collaboration with University Police Department and Student Health and Counseling Services on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault (DV/SA)  report response and RAD training.
3.2 Develop CSUSM Sexual Assault Response Task Force to provide integrated response and prevention strategies.
3.3 Ensure at least one certified DV/SA Advocate staffing Women’s Center during all regular business hours.
3.4 Enhance DV/SA training for all Women’s Center staff.
3.5 Secure funds for domestic violence and sexual assault prevention education and training to CSUSM campus.
3.6 Implement regular training's on domestic violence and sexual assault to staff and faculty at CSUSM.
3.7 Develop Peer Education program for undergraduate students to work for the Women’s Center unpaid interns or volunteers educating the campus community of issues surrounding domestic violence, sexual assault, and other forms of gender-based violence.
3.8 Increase student awareness of sexual assault, domestic violence, and intervention strategies through passive programming, training's, and programming.
3.9 Deepen relationship with Center for Community Solutions and Women’s Resource Center to provide direct service, referrals, education, and collaborative programming.
3.10 Strengthen relationship with Student Health Counseling Services to improve physical and emotional health services to survivors of abuse.
Implement discussion group at Women’s Center for survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence.


Developing women’s leadership potential and empowering feminist leadership is core to the work of the Women’s Center. Inspiring feminist activism, challenging women to take up “non-traditional” leadership roles, and assisting women in realizing their own potential are key goals.


Develop mentorship program between female undergraduates and faculty.
4.2 Improve feminist activist development and education, working in conjunction with the Women’s Studies department and the Social Justice Centers.
4.3 Increase opportunities for CSUSM students to participate in feminist activism through Women’s Center sponsored activities.
4.4 Develop collaboration with Women’s Studies department to initiate a Peer Education internship program for students to gain leadership experience in program planning, public speaking, workshop planning, and consensus decision making.
4.5 Increase Women’s Center student staff by 75% to allow greater opportunities for undergraduate students to gain intensive professional leadership experience.
4.6 Hire part- time staff person to coordinate Peer Education internship program and supervise interns.


The greatest resource the Women’s Center holds is the physical space. Above all else, it is critical that there is a location for women, gender non-conforming, and feminist students to find home on campus. In addition, as the central location for victims of sexual assault and domestic violence to seek advocacy and support on campus, it is crucial that the center is both welcoming and easily accessible.


Expend greater focus and resources on the maintenance and development of the physical center space to improve comfort and practicality for students.
5.2 Increase passive and active programming in the Women’s Center to make physical space a reflection of the center’s values and vision.
5.3 Relocate Women’s Center to a more central location on campus, adjoined with the other two Social Justice Centers.
5.4 Create safe, child-friendly room within the Women’s Center for children to be safe and play while parents or caretakers are in the center.
5.5 Develop addition of completely private room within the Women’s Center to be used for lactation and counseling sessions.


Social justice and diversity are central values of the Women’s Center. These values guide our daily work and our vision for the future. We are deeply committed to continually striving towards greater diversity in our programming, to building an ever more inclusive space, and to bringing the historical margin to the center.


Ensure that at least 50% of all Women’s Center programming focus on issues of intersectionality to highlight women of color, LBT women, women with disabilities, and other women who have been historically marginalized.
6.2 Continue to develop collaboration with the Cross-Cultural Center and LGBTQ Pride Center, deepening internal efforts such as staff training's and community building, as well as external strategies including Social Justice Summit and other social justice programming.
6.3 Develop Affiliate program to build stronger relationships with cultural and social justice student organizations.
6.4 Develop partnerships with Ethnic Studies, Native Studies, Chicano Studies (pending), and Critical Sexuality Studies (pending) to improve and build programming, and outreach to students.
6.5 Create discussion or networking groups for women of color and LBT women at Women’s Center.
6.6 Continue to prioritize ongoing staff development training in areas of social justice and diversity