About

Our Story

Girls Taking Action™ (GTA) was founded in 2005 by Dr. Verna Cornelia Price to address the rise in violent, destructive, and delinquent behavior being exhibited by the female students at Minneapolis’ North High School. The biggest concern was that the rise in this negative behavior was affecting all students and a large number of girls were being suspended.

At the time, GTA partnered with Achieve! Minneapolis’ Career Center Initiative and received a grant from The Minneapolis Foundation to begin helping 120 girls in grades 9-12 at North High School. In its debut year, the project resulted in a dramatic 50% decrease in school violence, suspensions, delinquent and destructive behavior among girls and a significant increase in academic engagement.

As of today, GTA has impacted over 3,000 middle school and high school girls throughout Minnesota, Michigan, and Georgia as well as Guatemala, Kenya and Liberia.  Over the years, GTA has raised over $1 million dollars to support the program and empower girls around the world. Our girls are twice more likely to attend post-secondary education than other girls in their high schools with 95% graduating from high school on time and 75% attending college.

Our Goals

  • Re-engage junior and senior high school students in academics and leadership while decreasing violent and disruptive behavior
  • Engage girls in meaningful mentoring with positive women leaders
  • Prepare girls to graduate on time from high school and pursue higher education
  • Engage girls in advocacy and social change through community service-learning
  • Engage girls in positive cross-cultural interactions and communication

What We Do

Motivate

Personal Power is a core element of the program. Girls learn seven dimensions of their personal power and how to use a critical thinking process to help them understand why they are powerful and how to use these tools to embrace success in school and life.

Mentor

Leadership development is a focus of GTA. Girls learn how to become positive leaders in their school and local community through community service learning projects. The girls participate in career coaching by local and community women leaders.

Empower

Throughout the program, girls are actively designing their future by strategically participating in activities that support their growth. At the end of the school year, their efforts are celebrated with an annual tea event where they showcase their learning and service projects.

Engage

Girls go on field trips to colleges, cultural and community events that inspire greatness. Throughout the year, career-driven women leaders meet the girls and share their stories.

Educate

Working in tandem with local school districts, girls are supported by their educational institution. Each weekly mentoring meeting is packed with tools and resources to help the GTA girls succeed in their current situation and plan for a successful future.

How We Do It

GTA girls partner with mentors and successful women leaders who meet together once a week. Girls learn how to use their personal power, develop their careers, become leaders and give back to their communities through service-learning. Girls can enroll as early as grade 6 and stay enrolled in the program throughout high school and into college.

Outcomes

We specialize in engaging students in the following Five C’s that directly influence girls’ lives:

  1. Confidence: GTA girls learn how to use their personal power to embrace academic and social success.
  2. College: GTA girls attend at least one college tour a year. Every girl is expected to attend college
  3. Careers: GTA girls participate in small career coaching groups and visit a major corporation each year.
  4. Culture: GTA girls participate in a variety of cultural experiences that include theatre, art, and history.
  5. Community: GTA girls demonstrate leadership skills by conducting community service-learning projects.

Impact

  • GTA participants GPA increases by 67% on average
  • GTA participants experience a 75% decrease in suspensions
  • GTA participants are at a 95% graduation rate compared to 81% for MN and 60% for Minneapolis public schools
  • 75% of GTA participants attend college

Who We Serve

Girls Taking Action™ is proud to be a well-connected organization that serves:

Junior and high school girls in grades 6-12

Community Chapters:

Latina Community Chapter

Somali Community Chapter
African American Community Chapter
Asian American Community Chapter

Minneapolis/Hennepin County Schools
Anwatin Middle School
Patrick Henry High School
Minneapolis North High School
Robinsdale Cooper High School
Marcy Open

St. Paul/Ramsey County Schools
Humboldt JR & SR High School
Ramsey Middle School
Washington Technology JR & SR High School

Atlanta Public Schools

Global Reach
In 2010, Girls Taking Action™ expanded internationally to Guatemala in partnership with Asociacion de Superacion Educativa (no active link).
In 2016 Girls Taking Action™ expanded to Kenya, Africa in partnership with Light of Hope

More locations to come!

Our Corporate Partners

GTA girls partner with successful women leaders in the following corporations:

3M

CHS
Ecolab
General Mills
Mortenson
Wells Fargo