The Sunflower Initiative logo
Women Funding Women’s Education
The Sunflower Initiative logo
Women Funding Women’s Education

About Us

The Sunflower Initiative is a non-profit organization founded by women who have so valued their woman’s college experience that they want to help provide that opportunity for other women. The Sunflower Initiative was created to honor the legacy of Randolph-Macon Woman’s College and seeks to embrace women (and those who love them) from other women’s colleges who share our passion for the life-changing experience known as a woman’s college education.

The Value of a Woman’s College

Numerous research studies have shown that despite the fact of achieving high grades and other indicators of success, women college students report significantly lower perceptions of ability, confidence and physical well-being than men do. In fact, a recent study at Princeton University discovered that after two years at Princeton, women’s self-confidence in academic abilities erode and they are less likely to speak up in class than their male peers. The lack of confidence and training in leadership and critical thinking skills has implications for the development and advancement of women as leaders across the spectrum of careers including politics, science, math, business, and the arts. Top co-ed institutions are well aware of this dynamic and are initiating programs to address the issues facing college women. For instance, Duke University and Princeton University have begun mentoring and leadership training programs for women. Engineering schools are also developing WISE programs for female students that include mentoring, support and even separate residences.

However, none of these programs at co-ed institutions can compete with the results achieved by women’s colleges. Studies have consistently shown that women who graduate from women’s colleges are more likely to:

  • obtain graduate degrees
  • have a significant leadership role in college
  • have more self confidence and show more initiative
  • choose more traditionally male career paths
  • are exposed to greater understanding of diversity than at co-ed colleges
  • score higher on standardized tests
  • develop significantly higher levels of self esteem than other achieving women at co-ed institutions
  • report greater satisfaction with their college experience
  • engage in civic activities after college
  • develop higher order critical thinking skills

Women’s colleges are successful at educating and training women because it is their sole mission to do so. They have a long history of teaching women to lean in — and the results prove it.

Don’t take our word for it — here are some links to back up our claims:
http://womenscolleges.org/perspective/nsse-study
http://www.aacu.org/ocww/volume41_2/fromwhereisit.cfm
http://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/02/15/women
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1DBJ9CYSFkM
http://www.makers.com/hillary-rodham-clinton/moments/all-womens-college
http://thechoice.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/09/22/conference/

Still wondering about the women’s college experience?
Click here to find out why much of the conventional wisdom about a women’s college just isn’t true.