From the Director - Coming Home to Women's and Gender Studies

Originally published on December 16, 2014

What a pleasure it is to be writing this message! We have had another successful semester here at the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies. Our student enrollment in classes is high and our numbers of majors and minors are steadily increasing. This is due in great part to our dedicated faculty and instructors—I thank them for helping to grow our program and to provide such quality instruction. The recurring theme from the students who have chosen to major or minor in Women’s and Gender Studies is that, from the first class they took, they felt as though they were “coming home.”

Speaking of homes, through the diligent work of our faculty member, Brian Jara, and T. Anne Hawkins, Co-Chairs of the Commission for LGBTQ Equity, and the commission’s members, an LGBTQ Resource Center will be created this spring semester here at WVU. This is an exciting, new venture, although it’s been a long time coming since most of our peer institutions already have such centers. We’re very excited, though, that all of their hard work is coming to fruition. The LGBTQ Resource Center will be much appreciated by students, faculty, staff, and community members. Thank you!

Once again, Women’s and Gender Studies hosted a successful fair this fall semester. Brian Jara and our five graduate teaching assistants, Lauren Deckelbaum, Brendan Muckian-Bates, Heather Murton, Leigh Bryant and Lacey Bonar, organized and managed the whole event. President Gee attended and Provost McConnell offered the well received and inspiring opening remarks. Over 300 students participated and presented their group research projects on a wide array of topics.

Our new website has launched! The updated website has a cleaner look, more “user-friendly” organization (we hope), and a couple of added sign up features for Faculty Associates and Friends. There is now a streamlined way for people to either sign up as Faculty Associates (if they are faculty members teaching courses related to women’s and gender studies) or as a Friend of the Center for Women’s and Gender Studies to receive all of the notifications of upcoming events, Check it out at

Next year, 2015, marks the 35th anniversary of the Center. What an amazing run it has been! Stay tuned for events surrounding and commemorating this great occasion.

Best wishes of the season to you and yours!

We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you in the spring!