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WHAT IS THE CENTER FOR WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES?

The Center for Women’s and Gender Studies is an academic unit offering a central location for discourse relative to the field of women’s and gender studies. We offer degrees in women’s and gender studies including majors, minors and graduate certificates. Through our network of over 100 faculty associates, we offer courses across the entire University. We offer or promote a wide array of opportunities to learn more about the many aspects of the field, including presentations, fireside chats, Scholars in Residence and more. We also offer scholarships and awards for students and faculty.

WHO CAN TAKE WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES?

Don’t let the name mislead you. Women’s and gender studies is not just about women, nor is it about male-bashing or gender wars. Rather, women’s and gender studies courses cover a broad range of subjects with sensitivity to gender, race, ability, age, sexual orientation and class. All genders are involved in the program both as professors and students. Social work graduate student William Townsend finds women’s and gender studies enriching personally and intellectually. Raised primarily by his mother, Townsend finds Women’s and Gender Studies helped him to understand why, with a mother as a sole breadwinner, he was raised in poverty. “I try to encourage other males to take women’s and gender studies courses because they will enable them to work in diverse groups,” said Townsend. Many men have graduated from the women’s and gender studies program with certificates or minors and hundreds more take courses such as Women’s Studies 170, the introductory course. “I think that all students should take women’s studies classes to broaden their views,” said David “Hoby” Botero, a communications and Spanish major from Colombia. “It is a key to a new world. Little by little, we can find a common equality.”

WHAT WILL WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES DO FOR ME?

WVU students say women’s and gender studies courses help them grow both personally and academically. Typical comments include: “I learned self-awareness and leadership skills.” “I found my ‘voice’ and courage to express my own opinions.” I learned about networking, risk-taking, nurturing and respecting people different from myself.” “Women’s studies taught me how to think about a question from all sides.” “Women’s studies gave me support. I know now I’m not the only feminist at this university.”

HOW DO I GET A DEGREE IN WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES?

Currently, there are several undergraduate degrees available for women’s and gender studies students, including minor and major options.  If you have questions about these degree options, you can contact the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies for more information. Check in at least once a semester with the Center to update your progress toward graduation.

WHY TAKE WOMEN’S AND GENDER STUDIES COURSES?

Business, public administration, healthcare, communications, law, teaching, social work, counseling, creative arts, government and journalism are all fields in which a major, minor or graduate certificate in women’s and gender studies is a valuable professional credential.

Over 2,000 students now enroll annually in women’s and gender studies courses available throughout WVU. Women’s and gender studies faculty associates in many departments teach a wide variety of courses, and new courses are being continually added. Many women’s and gender studies courses fulfill GEF objectives.