Can temporary labor market opportunities shift developing countries to a “good equilibrium” in female education and associated outcomes? In this paper I exploit the sudden and massive growth of female factory jobs in free trade zones (FTZs) in the Dominican Republic in the 1990s, and subsequent decline in the 2000s, to provide the first evidence that even relatively brief episodes of preferential trade preferences for export industries may have permanent effects on human capital levels and female empowerment. Focusing on a sample of provinces that established FTZs and exploiting variation in the opening of zones and age of women at the time of opening, I show that the FTZ openings led to a large and very robust increase in girls’ education. The effect persists after a decline in FTZ jobs in the 2000s following the end of a trade agreement with the U.S. and an increase in competition from Asia. The reason appears to be that the increase in some girls’ education changed marriage markets: girls whose education increased due to the FTZ openings married later, had better matches with more stable marriages, gave birth later, and had children who were more likely to survive infancy. In sum, the evidence in this paper indicates that labor markets can improve female outcomes in developing countries through general equilibrium effects in the education and marriage markets.