This study demonstrates that place-defined in this article as labor market area (LMA)- provides a useful context for examining how youth manage gendered situations. Places vary by conditions in which gender is more, less or differently salient, and a particular mix of factors accommodates different individual outcomes. This study utilizes multi-level modeling to examine influence of LMA characteristics on over-time educational measures for young women (Center for Human Resource Research 1994). Hierarchical models determine place-level effects on both average outcomes (within and between LMAs) and attainment processes. A major finding of this study is that aggregate place effects channel personal decisions and outcomes of young women. Young women's educational aspirations are dependent on gender- specific variables such as the number of women in college or the number of young women married in a local area. Attainment depends on the percentage of women in higher education and a local labor market's average age at first marriage. Further, what are assumed to be positive environmental effects (e.g., manufacturing dominance) are based on structural advantages for men and actually depress outcomes for women. Notably, the influence of place is independent of strong individual-level determinants, including social class. Copyright 2002 The American Journal of Economics and Sociology.