Students

Get involved with the Women’s Center

We have a number of great programs, from the alternative break experiences to the Moxie Project, as well opportunities for work-study, internships, and independent projects. If you are interested in any of these, contact Shelley Gist, the program coordinator for students, at shelleygist@unc.edu.

You can also get trained to help prevent gender violence and support survivors, get involved in campus organizations working on gender issues, and get involved with community organizations that focus on gender violence prevention and advocacy.

If you or someone you know is experiencing or has experienced stalking, harassment, and/or sexual or interpersonal (relationship) violence at some point in your life, there are a range of resources available. The Gender Violence Services Coordinators, Cassidy Johnson (cassidyjohnson@unc.edu or 919.962.1343) and Holly Lovern (holly.lovern@unc.edu, 919.962.7430), can provide confidential emotional support, answer questions about reporting options at the University, assist  in navigating through the reporting process, and help link with support options at UNC and in the community (including accompanying you to another office/department/agency to request additional support). Safe at UNC collects information about on and off campus resources, support, and reporting options for survivors of sexual violence.

Student-parents should visit Parenting @ UNC for detailed information on the resources available to support Carolina families. You can find detailed information about about family leave for students at the bottom of this page.

The Green Zone program “train[s] members of the Carolina community to know more about the issues and concerns faced by military affiliated students and to identify individuals who are available to assist this population.”

The HAVEN Program (Helping Advocates for Violence Ending Now) “is intended to provide students, faculty or staff with tools and skills to be an ally to someone who has experienced sexual or interpersonal (relationship) violence or stalking.”

One Act “is a skills training for Carolina students who are interested in preventing violence, led by peer educators and a full-time or graduate student staff member.”

Rethink: Psychiatric Illness teaches the basics about mental illness and the statistics and prevalence of mental illnesses in our state and on our campus, debunks myths, and familiarizes participants with the resources available on campus

Safe Zone aims to “create a network of allies that people can talk to about sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression.”

Embody Carolina is an organization dedicated to preparing students to serve as compassionate and effective allies to those struggling with eating disorders.

Library skills: Kristan Shawgo is the research librarian for the collections in women’s and gender studies. She can answer quick questions over email or schedule appointments for more complicated questions.

Currently, there is no official policy governing undergraduate family leave or accommodations. However, Alice Dawson, in Academic Advising; the Office of the Dean of Students; and the Women’s Center can help you work with your professors to arrange extensions or other accommodations where necessary.

Graduate Students Parental Leave Policy:

  • Eligible students (full-time, stipend-supported) are entitled to six weeks paid leave. (There is no provision for complicated births.)
  • Both parents, if they are grad students with UNC, may take leave, either simultaneously or sequentially.
  • Student must notify department advisor and/or chair at least 8 weeks in advance of leave.
  • Students maintain continuous enrollment during leave (e.g., ongoing library access, health benefits, student debt suspension).
  • The policy automatically allows a one academic semester extension for all academic responsibilities and time to degree.
  • The Graduate Student Parental Leave Policy establishes minimum standards; departments and schools are encouraged to more flexible where feasible.
  • Graduate School Policy: Full-time students who are not stipend-supported can request leave without tuition or stipend support.

Professional students:

  • Policies are set by individual programs and departments.

Postdoctoral students:

  • Six weeks of paid parental leave to care for a new biological, adopted, or foster child.
  • This leave includes exhausting all available vacation (12 days) and sick (12 days) leave. Formally, mentors must approve leave.
  • Paid parental leave must be taken within one year of the birth or placement of the child.
  • May be eligible for FMLA-defined leave if they meet the eligibility requirements under the exceptions section of the eligible employees section of the Family and Medical Leave Policy.
  • Postdocs should also check their funding agency to determine whether the funder imposes any restrictions on leave.

For all student organizations, see the list here. Descriptions are drawn from organization websites.

Active Minds at Carolina is a service and advocacy organization dedicated to raising awareness for and combating stigma against mental health

Carolina Advocating for Gender Equality (CAGE) is a committee under the Campus Y that aims to raise awareness about gender-based violence and discrimination through activism and progressive discussion with members of the Carolina Community.

Carolina BEBES “provide[s] an opportunity for interested students to learn more about breastfeeding and to advocate for supportive breastfeeding practices on campus, locally, nationally and globally.”

The Conference on Race, Class, Gender and Ethnicity (CRCGE) is a student organization affiliated with the UNC School of Law … designed as an academic forum in which recent political and legal developments could be examined through a social justice perspective.

Diversity and Inclusiveness in Collegiate Environments (DICE) aims “to create greater diversity awareness and programming inclusiveness for students at UNC, which will allow for a deeper level of consciousness and thinking around diversity, privilege, equity, and other factors.

DVAP (Domestic Violence Action Project) is a university-recognized student organization at the UNC School of Law that provides free legal representation to victims of domestic violence who are seeking a civil domestic violence protective order.

Feminist Students United (FSU) is a progressive feminist organization which affirms that no form of oppression can be overcome until all aspects of racism, classism, sexism, and heterosexism are dismantled.

LGBTQ Center “works to foster a welcoming and inclusive environment for UNC-Chapel Hill community members of all sexual orientations, gender identities and gender expressions.”

Natural Girls Discuss Natural Curls aims to create a positive and safe environment that enables women of color to discuss a variety of topics such as hair, health, beauty and female empowerment.

Carolina Women in Business (CWIB) provides the women of UNC Kenan-Flagler Business School with opportunities for career and community development and networking opportunities in preparation for their post-MBA journeys. – See more at: http://www.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/student-life/mba/mba-clubs/carolina-women-in-business#sthash.mjiF6ZOp.dpuf

Parents as Law Students strives to support students faced with the dual pressures of law school and parenthood.

UNC Student Parent Association (SPA) provides resources, support, avenues for advocacy and social networking opportunities to all pregnant and parenting UNC students, postdoctoral fellows and medical residents.

Project Dinah is an initiative that seeks to end sexual assault and interpersonal violence on campus and in the community through empowerment, education, and advocacy.

Sexuality and Gender Alliance (SAGA) strives to connect, inform, and advance LGBTIQ-individuals and their allies.

Stigma Free Carolina is a UNC community campaign aimed at reducing stigma toward mental health concerns and treatment.

Students United for Reproductive Justice (SURJ) exists to educate, engage, and empower the UNC-CH community about reproductive health and rights.

The Siren is a student-produced publication of UNC-Chapel Hill that promotes a feminist perspective on issues surrounding gender, identity, sexuality and human rights.

VDay Carolina is global activist movement to end violence against women and girls.

WELL: Women Experiencing Learning & Leadership aims to provide a connected living experience in which residents foster strong interpersonal relationships, a proud investment in community, shared strength and appreciation of their gender-expression, and a commitment to both intellectual engagement and their individual contribution to the world.

Women’s Health Services (through Campus Health)


The Orange County Rape Crisis Center is a 501(c)3 non-profit agency that provides 24-hour crisis intervention services to survivors of sexual violence. There are opportunities to volunteer in a range of roles.

The Compass Center for Women and Families “offers services to adults and children who are experiencing emotional, physical or sexual abuse in their personal relationships.”