Girls Getting Ahead in Leadership




Girls Getting Ahead in Leadership (GGAL) is an academic, leadership and college preparation program for underserved and at-risk immigrant/refugee girls in 6th-12th grade. This program utilizes self-empowerment workshops, consistent academic support, and the development of relationships with college mentors to achieve positive student outcomes. Our number one goal is to help our GGAL girls dream big and create plans to achieve those dreams. 

We provide GGAL programming through the 5/10 program and after school hours at Washington Tech Magnet School. The GGAL program is also implemented at the Oromo Community of MN and is open to the community.

As the flagship program at WISE, GGAL has worked with over 300 participants in Ramsey County. In the 2017-18 school year, GGAL went from only serving high school students to expanding its program to middle school students as well.

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ggal goals


1. Academic Performance

Increase the English language, reading, writing, communication and college readiness skills of participants. 

2. personal development

Increase capacity of participants to identify and build upon strengths to improve self-esteem, agency and leadership skills.


3. self-sufficiency

Provide financial literacy education and increase access, persistence, and completion of post-secondary education in order to have access to higher paying career options and independence in the future.

4. Mentorship

Increase the provision of a supportive environment through the use of mentors that will increase academic excellence and support for GGAL participants during high school, and as they transition into and complete their college degree.

5. Parent Engagement

Increase overall student participation, retention and success in GGAL by establishing and nurturing two-way partnerships with parents and students.



Our Activities

college preparation

  • Assistance in resumes, college applications, essay writing, financial aid applications, etc.

homework support

  • English literacy and speaking practice

  • Editing and revising papers

  • Math, science, and English subject support

leadership & career exploration

  • Field trips and college visits

  • Volunteering

  • Mentor program with local college students

    • Read about some of our recent mentors here!


How to join


  • Washington Technology Magnet School (open to Washington students only)

    • Monday-Friday 1:45pm - 3:00pm

    • Monday and Wednesday 3:00pm - 5:00pm

  • Oromo Community of Minnesota (open to all)

    • Tuesday and Thursday 4:00pm- 5:30pm


  • Girls Getting Ahead in Leadership is FREE!

  • We accept girls into our program on a rolling basis!

  • For more information please email Nancy Hlee Vang at

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GGAL participants at Girls Rock the Capitol 2019

GGAL participants at Girls Rock the Capitol 2019

Ms. Nancy, WISE Interns, and GGAL make friendship flowers!

Ms. Nancy, WISE Interns, and GGAL make friendship flowers!

GGAL participants create cultural flags that represent themselves

GGAL participants create cultural flags that represent themselves



Nancy Hlee Vang

GGAL Program Coordinator