Why WGS?

Why Study WGS?

Like other liberal arts degrees, a degree in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies will give you the following skills:

  • Strong critical thinking skills
  • Confident oral presentation skills
  • Effective writing skills
  • Strong research skills

In addition, a degree in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies will give you a unique set of skills. A study of Women’s Studies graduates (Luebke and Reilly 1995) found that WS graduates gained the following from their degrees:

  • Empowerment and self-confidence
  • Critical thinking skills
  • Community-building skills
  • Ability to understand differences between and intersections among racism, homophobia, sexism, classism, ableism, anti-Semitism and other types of oppression

Student Testimonials:

“A few weeks into a WGS class, people become passionate about advocating for change. We need more people to be exposed to gender studies so they can take what they learn and go out into whatever career they choose with the mentality that they can make a difference. WGS courses, in my experience, are transformational.”
-Kayla Santos (2017)

“The WGS Department provided me with not only an invaluable education, but also a home away from home during my time at Wake Forest. The WGS faculty and staff are among the most supportive and passionate people on campus, and have helped me grow both inside and outside of the classroom.”
-Kellsi Wallace (2012)

“I absolutely loved my experience in WGS…I gained the confidence to question the status quo, and to do it in a productive and generative way. And those skills extend far beyond women’s issues or LGBT issues – I gained a framework for interacting with the world at large in a just and equitable way and a with a belief that each of us has the power to be a change-agent.”
-Jen Algire (1995)

“If professors at WFU had not nurtured the feminist activism they saw in us as students – in addition to the support and guidance they gave us in the classroom – I can’t imagine how many lives would have been different and incomplete. The ability of professors to teach us about a world that can be more just and equitable was as valuable as the analytical tools they gave us. The investment women’s studies professors made in us – not just as students but also as citizens – continues to shape who we are today.”
-Hannah Britton (1992), Associate Professor of Politics and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and the Director of the Center for the Study of Injustice at the Institute of Policy & Social Research at the University of Kansas

More Resources:

AAUP article: “Why STEM Students Need Gender Studies”

Inside Higher Ed article: “The Evolution of American Women’s Studies”

The National Women’s Studies Association (NWSA)