Universities across the nation experienced a change in the composition of their student bodies during the 1970s. The change reflected the decade's considerable social movements, and it brought increasing numbers of women and minority groups to all campuses. Older women, returning to academia as a result of "rising divorce rates, increasing economic need, and the [growing] emphasis on equality in employment" (Appendix III of a letter to acting Provost Wendell Harris from the Women's Programming Committee dated April 5, 1979) were identified as a group with special needs. In response, University Resources for Women was established in May 1979 by acting Provost Wendell Harris. In the Spring of 1980, the Board of Regents established the Office of University Resources for Women (URW) as a permanent entity. It operated within the Division of International and Special Programs from 1979 to 1990. URW operated within the Provost's Office during 1991 to 2004. In August of 2004, it became a unit reporting to the Vice President for Student Affairs. The name of the office was changed to Women's Resource Center in 2005.
1981 through April 1990 Wirtz House
The Women's Resource Center was located in room 258 of Swen Parson Hall from 1979-1981. It then moved to Wirtz House at 305 Normal Road (which is now the MLK Commons) in 1981 to provide a central location and visibility on campus. The Women's Resource Center moved to its present location (105 Normal Rd.) on November 2, 1990.
November 2, 1990 through Present Women's Resource Center
WRC remains committed to the provision of quality services for women on campus and to the coollaboration with other units to develop appropriate policies concerning conditions which affect them. In addition, the Women's Resource Center holds standing positions on the Presidential Commission on the Status of Women and the Women's Studies Advisory Committee.