Education/Community Colleges= attending a Community College can be a great way for students to ease into the world of higher education and to be able to learn at their own pace. Enrolling in community colleges, students can avoid going into sizeable amounts of student loan debt. In addition, students have flexibility as they are deciding what career paths to take, along with assisting in a school-life balance module.


Early Childhood Development = “researchers have learned that the human brain develops most of its neurons, and is at its most receptive to learning, between birth and three years of age. The first three to five eras play a key role in a Childs’s life as they begin to absorb the world around them and develop.”


The last several years I have partnered with University of Arizona Roosevelt Family Resource Center and South Phoenix Healthy Start to assist in Women Empowerment groups so that women and men can make sure they are coming from a mentally healthy space, to give their young children the nurturing they need. It is vital to arm parents with the tools and education they need to be able to provide their children with the best possible resources.




Apprenticeships = Over the years I have facilitated Workforce Development programs and attended Apprenticeship Summits, and I am aware of how significant these program are to the economic development of families and our communities. When we can train individuals with solid employment skills it equates to “gainful & sustainable” employment. I am intentional about promoting job growth and business development within our community. I promote having training programs that are directed towards a specific industry in need, which keeps our communities thriving. I am in constant contact with community colleges and organizations that promote apprenticeship programs. When we have training programs that offer gainful & sustainable employment it is aiding in eliminating a person &/or a family from homelessness.



Equal Pay = “Unequal pay is the top factor impacting inequality in workplaces today, according to the Randstad US, Women In The Workplace 2018 report.” The last 10 years the gender wage gap has seen little change, and it continues to plague women and particularly women of color for decades. Women in the United States earn on around 79 cents for every dollar that men earn, but this gap is much worse for women of color. As women we must know the market value for employment positions. Do not shy away from employment positions because you feel you only meet 85% of the requirements. Often what’s favorable for men is that they look at a job description and feel they meet 50-60% of the requirements and they still apply. We must not be afraid to negotiate our salaries and know our worth and value that we bring to organizations.


Contracts for Women Owned Businesses = “An estimated 9.1 million businesses in the United States are owned by women, but they collect just 5 percent of government contracting dollars designated for small firms each year, which represents a huge potential opportunity for women business owners.” As women we must be proactive and research those set-aside funds that are designated for “women-owned small business” and “economically disadvantaged women-owned small business” and sign up for those services that send out automatic bid notifications. In addition, teaming up and collaborating with other women owned business to create “win-win” strategies. Use the collaborative opportunity to secure those set-aside funds.

Audrey Bell-Jenkins


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