About Our Department

What is Women and Gender Studies?

In Women and Gender Studies classes, students explore a wide variety of historic and contemporary topics including gender, sexuality, queer theory, race/racism, culture, activism, privilege, and social and reproductive justice/injustice through theory, philosophy, art, literature, film, and the social sciences. Our students engage, explore, and interrogate these topics in challenging discussions that move beyond the surface, as a way to practice and improve critical thinking. Classes are generally not focused on lengthy lectures or PowerPoint presentations. We believe that learning happens through intense and illuminating conversations and meaningful interactions with our fellow students, faculty, and community. An important component of our program is student and community activism. We expect our students to take what they learn from these discussions and turn that knowledge into action. 

Why a degree in Women & Gender Studies or Queer Studies?

Students who choose to add the Women and Gender Studies major or minor or the Queer Studies minor do so because they are looking for a level of learning beyond job preparation. Getting an education consists of more than acquiring a skill set that you may or may not use in the future. Women and Gender Studies students are not treated like potential workers who are only valued for their ability to become productive members of society. Our students are valued as human beings with the capacity to think critically and take action. Because of the nature of our curriculum, Women's Studies graduates come to the world with valuable insight that travels through many disciplines. As a result, our graduates are prepared to pursue careers in a variety of fields such as education, law, counseling, social work, health care, journalism, art, business, human services, nursing, and many professional arenas.