Women's / Gender Studies Minor
Women are the majority sex in the nation and comprise the majority of all students in higher education. The number of women in the paid work force exceeds that of men. As more women work, business and corporations find the need for more sensitivity to issues such as health care, sexual harassment, parental leave, pay equity and equal employment. There is a growing demand in the professions of law, medicine, social work, teaching, counseling, government services and international affairs for expertise in gender issues. Women are recognized and courted as powerful consumers. Women are an influential force in American society as they continue to question and restructure traditional norms, sex roles and cultural expectations.
The minor in Women’s / Gender Studies is designed to examine gender from a multidisciplinary perspective and prepare students for the challenges of our gendered world. Students will explore women’s roles and experiences in social, political and economic life; women’s history; women’s spirituality; feminist theory; women’s literature; women and the arts; the intersection of gender with other categories of difference such as race, ethnicity, class, sexuality, religion, physical and developmental ability, and age; the impact of globalization on women’s lives; and the ways in which gender stereotypes influence women’s and men’s ideas of themselves and each other.
Course work will provide key conceptual tools that women and men can use in educating themselves and others while in college and can later employ in achieving a personally and professionally successful life. Students will learn to recognize and challenge gender inequity and other types of oppression and will broaden their awareness of current societal expectations for both women and men, thereby increasing their effectiveness and sensitivity in a variety of interpersonal and professional settings. In almost any career a woman or man chooses, s/he will encounter multiple challenges that reflect our gendered world. The Minor would be appropriate and of significant future benefit to students pursing majors in Management, Marketing, Literary Studies, Criminal Justice, Sociology, History, Psychology, Communications, International Studies, Education, Health Care and students interested in careers promoting peace and social justice. Students would be better prepared to work with advocacy groups, human rights organizations, environmental and consumer groups, health care, youth, elderly and social services, policy and lobbying organizations, trade and international associations and labor.
The Minor in Women’s / Gender Studies requires 15 credits, Students select four courses (12 credits) from the following and complete the capstone seminar, Special Topics in Feminist Theory, for an additional three credits