About Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

Miami faculty show their support for the National Organization for Women.

The Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Program (WGS), in the Department of Global and Intercultural Studies at Miami University, is a dynamic, interdisciplinary program that investigates how our lives are affected by gender race, class, age, sexuality, religion, (dis)ability, gender identity, and nationality. WGS emphasizes the importance of understanding gender and sexuality as elements of wider social and political structures of power, knowledge, experience, culture, embodiedness, intimacy, and labor.

In WGS, students find an active and supportive community, close interaction with faculty, opportunities to take on leadership roles, and an academic program that allows them to cross the traditional disciplinary boundaries. With 5 core faculty members and around 45 affiliates, the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program at Miami University integrates expertise in virtually every field of human endeavor.

Careers

Miami alum Rachel Rudwall addresses the 2018 M.I.A.M.I. Women Leadership Symposium.

Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies graduates gain knowledge, self-awareness, intercultural competency, and breadth of perspective, which are valuable in their own right and which public service organizations, private industry, government, and graduate schools need. And the employment picture is bright: comparisons of Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies graduates with female college graduates nationwide show an edge for WGS students in both traditional and non-traditional career fields. Recent graduates have gone on to law school, graduate school in many fields, public service and private sector careers, political leadership positions, and teaching in both K-12 and higher education. And the employment picture is bright: comparisons of women's studies program graduates with female college graduates nationwide show an edge for women's studies in both traditional and non-traditional career fields.

See also:

Employers are eager to have the skills our students acquire. A recent (2013) Association of American Colleges and Universities survey of potential employers, It Takes More than a Major: Employer Priorities for College Learning and Student Success: Overview and Key Findings, that 93% of employers "a demonstrated capacity to think critically, communicate clearly, and solve complex problems is more important than [a candidate's] undergraduate major."

  • "More than 9 in 10 of those surveyed say it is important that those they hire demonstrate ethical judgment and integrity; intercultural skills; and the capacity for continued new learning."
  • "More than 75% of employers say they want more emphasis on 5 key areas including: critical thinking, complex problem-solving, written and oral communication, and applied knowledge in real-world settings."
  • "80% of employers agree that, regardless of their major, all college students should acquire broad knowledge in the liberal arts and sciences."
  • "Employers consistently rank outcomes and practices that involve application of skills over acquisition of discrete bodies of knowledge. Employers also strongly endorse practices that require students to demonstrate both acquisition of knowledge and its application."

According to these data, the education provided by the WGS Program, with the strong emphasis we place on engaged learning, intercultural and civic awareness, and connecting theory with practice, is the wave of the future.

Masters and doctoral students who earn a Graduate Certificate in Women's Studies may also gain an advantage in a highly competitive job market. In the worlds of business, public service, government, education, and fine arts, job candidates with knowledge of how gender and cultural difference function in their area of expertise may stand out in a crowded field. Perhaps even more important may be the intellecutally stimulating experience of thinking across and outside the disciplinary parameters of a specialized area of study. Sharing these inquiries with students from other fields creates a rich supplement to a discipline-centered degree program.

Mission and Goals

Mission

People watching a participant in 2018 M.I.A.M.I. Women Leadership Symposium Hawk Tank event

The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program at Miami University is a dynamic, interdisciplinary program that investigates how our lives are affected by gender, race, class, age, sexuality, religion, (dis)ability, gender identity, and nationality. Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies emphasizes the importance of understanding gender as a part of wider social and political structures of power, knowledge, experience, culture, embodiedness, intimacies, and labor.

Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies courses are organized around contemporary feminist research and theory, and focus intersectionally on women, gender, and sexuality as subjects of inquiry. Our coursework also focuses on how theory and practice come together. Students may choose from courses spanning departments, disciplines, divisions and ideologies.

The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program provides a context in which women's work and women's issues are explored in-depth, celebrating women's creativity, women's lives, and women's work. In Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, students find an active and supportive community, close interaction with faculty, opportunities to take on leadership roles, and an academic program that allows them to cross the traditional disciplinary boundaries. With 5 core faculty members and 44 affiliates, the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program at Miami University integrates expertise in virtually every field of human endeavor.

Goals

In addition, the program responds to specific university goals for student learning by:

  • promoting critical and creative thinking
  • facilitating engaged learning
  • providing opportunities for undergraduate research
  • emphasizing strong written and oral communication skills
  • fostering leadership skills and opportunities

The program with its major, minor, graduate certificate, and Miami Plan courses and sequences, is integral to Miami's commitment to community diversity, transnational perspectives, and academic excellence.

Faculty

Core Faculty

Cho, Yu-Fang

Detloff, Madelyn

Etter-Lewis, Gwen

McLaughlin, Lisa

Emerita Faculty

Fuehrer, Ann

Lloyd, Sally

McMahon-Klosterman, Kathy

Affiliate Faculty

Affiliate Faculty
Name Department/Program Phone Email
Androne, Helane Adams English (Middletown) (513) 727-3267 adamshd@MiamiOH.edu
Armstrong, Ann Elizabeth Theatre (513) 529-8317 armstra2@MiamiOH.edu
Becker, Ronald Paul Media & Culture (513) 529-3540 beckerrp@MiamiOH.edu
Blue, Jennifer Physics (513) 529-1380 bluejm@MiamiOH.edu
Buchberger, Michelle Interdisciplinary & Communication Studies (Hamilton) (513) 785-3037 buchbem@MiamiOH.edu
Callahan, Phyllis Biology (513) 529-3147 callahp@MiamiOH.edu
Carter, J.A. Social & Behavioral Sciences (Hamilton) (513) 785-1877 carterj@MiamiOH.edu
Casey, Moira English (Middletown) (513) 727-3280 caseyme@MiamiOH.edu
Corbett, Mary Jean English (513) 529-7539 corbetmj@MiamiOH.edu
Croucher, Sheila L. Global & Intercultural Studies (513) 529-2459 crouchsl@MiamiOH.edu
Dunning, Stefanie English (513) 529-7354 stefanie.dunning@MiamiOH.edu
England, Marcia Geography (513) 529-5023 m.england@MiamiOH.edu
Gândara, Paula Spanish & Portuguese (513) 529-6039 gandarp@MiamiOH.edu
Goldy, Charlotte A. Newman History (513) 529-5143 goldycn@MiamiOH.edu
Harrington, C. Lee Sociology (513) 529-3437 harrincl@MiamiOH.edu
Haynes, Carolyn Academic Affairs (513) 529-6717 haynesca@MiamiOH.edu
Johnson, Cheryl English (513) 529-5251 johnsocl@MiamiOH.edu
Johnson, Kathleen N. English (513) 529-7520 johnso33@MiamiOH.edu
Johnson, Kelli English (Hamilton) (513) 785-3036 johnso58@MiamiOH.edu
Kernodle, Tammy L. Music (513) 529-2626 kernodtl@MiamiOH.edu
Klosowska, Anna M. French & Italian (513) 529-5943 roberta2@MiamiOH.edu
Kulbaga, Theresa English (Hamilton) (513) 785-3200 kulbagta@MiamiOH.edu
Loadenthal, Michael Sociology & Gerontology (202) 681-2057 loadenm@MiamiOH.edu
Lyons, Deborah Classics (513) 529-1487 lyonsd@MiamiOH.edu
Medley, Kimberly E. Geography (513) 529-1558 medleyke@MiamiOH.edu
Money, Nicholas P. Individualized Studies; Biology (513) 529-5044 moneynp@MiamiOH.edu
Neumann, Caryn Interdisciplinary & Communication Studies (Middletown) (513) 727-3497 neumance@MiamiOH.edu
Oakenfull, Gillian Marketing (513) 529-1209 oakenfg@MiamiOH.edu
Pan, Yihong History (513) 529-5138 pany@MiamiOH.edu
Petonito, Gina Social & Behavioral Sciences (Middletown) (513) 217-4177 petonig@MiamiOH.edu
Pohlhaus, Gaile Philosophy (513) 529-4739 pohlhag@MiamiOH.edu
Radina, M. Elise Family Science & Social Work (513) 529-3639 radiname@MiamiOH.edu
Righi, Andrea French & Italian (513) 529-5932 righia@MiamiOH.edu
Robinson, Marsha R. Humanities & Creative Arts (Middletown) (513) 217-4015 robins78@MiamiOH.edu
Rousmaniere, Kate Educational Leadership (513) 529-6843 rousmak@MiamiOH.edu
Schneider, Monica Political Science (513) 529-0257 mschneider@MiamiOH.edu
Smith, Whitney Womack English (Hamilton) (513) 785-3029 womackwa@MiamiOH.edu
Spencer, Leland Media, Journalism, & Film (Hamilton) (513) 785-3060 spencelg@MiamiOH.edu
Sutcliffe, Ben German, Russian, Asian, & Middle Eastern Languages & Cultures (513) 529-1822 sutclibm@MiamiOH.edu
Van Gundy, Alana L. Criminal Justice (Hamilton) (513) 785-3262 yoderal@MiamiOH.edu
Weems, Lisa D. Educational Leadership (513) 529-6835 weemsld@MiamiOH.edu
Wilson, Elizabeth Comparative Religion (513) 529-4307 wilsone@MiamiOH.edu
Zakin, Emily A. Philosophy (513) 529-2428 zakinea@MiamiOH.edu

Student Organizations

American Association of University Women

The mission of AAUW at Miami is to empower women as individuals and our community by helping women gain the confidence to be next generation leaders in the workforce and beyond.

Black Women Empowered

Through group discussion and community outreach, BWE members support the varied identities, struggles, and legacies of Black women. BWE encourages students to organize toward social justice, cross-cultural alliances, and freedom for all backgrounds.

Colors (Miami Colors)

Colors is student organization that is prioritized around the support, education, awareness and advocacy of the GLBTQA (Gay, Gay, Lesbian, Bi, Trans, Questioning and Ally) community.

Feminists Working on Revolutionary Democracy

Feminists Working On Revolutionary Democracy is a student organization composed of individuals who desire to address — through activism, discussion, and support — important issues that specifically concern all people marginalized by systems of oppression. We use grassroots activism and discussion to heighten awareness about these issues. Our hope is to empower people of all genders, sexualities, and identities to feel confident and supported on campus and off.

GLBTQ Services (GLBTQ)

The mission of GLBTQ Services is to make the Miami University community an open, safe, and inclusive environment for people of all sexualities and gender identities.

I Am That Girl: Miami University Local Chapter

I Am That Girl is an organization dedicated to empowering girls and young women to express who they are and to be their true selves through honest conversation about the issues they and other young women face.

Love You Like A Sister (L.Y.L.A.S.)

LYLAS is a support group for women on campus. We have six principles(pride, achievement, knowledge, refinement, respect and sisterhood.

Men Against Rape and Sexual Assault (MARS)

Men Against Rape and Sexual Assault (MARS) is an organization devoted to educating our male peers of the realities of sexual assault.

People Against Violence and Sexual Assault (PAVES)

PAVES is an organization with the goal to promote awareness and prevention to the Miami community regarding sexual and interpersonal violence. That goal is accomplished through large and small campus events and partnering with on and off campus allies.

Pride

Raising awareness of social injustices based on sexual orientation and gender through educational programming, dialogue and any other format we deem appropriate. Talk about issues related to sexual orientation and how to lessen the isolation of LGBTQ.

Spectrum

Miami University's undergraduate LGBTQ-straight alliance, holding weekly meetings and building a strong community with roots in education, activism, awareness, and acceptance.

Women's Center

The Women's Center is a welcoming, safe space for all, supporting student success by providing resources and referrals, educational programming, outreach, and advocacy focused on issues impacting women.

Student Awards

The WGS Program sponsors an essay contest each year in the late spring to recognize outstanding student work in the area of women's, gender, and sexuality studies. Prizes are awarded to the best essay written by a graduating senior in the program and for the best paper by any other undergraduate student.

The program also supports womanist/feminist work done outside of the classroom. Funds are made available through the Women's Studies Memorial Award to support work done in the spirit of previous WGS affiliates who have died, in order that their contributions to women's well being might be perpetuated.

Karen Maitland Schilling Prize

photo of Karen Maitland SchillingOn May 6, 2011, the WGS Program announced the endowment of the Karen Maitland Schilling Prize.

Dr. Karen Maitland Schilling served Miami University as Director of the Women's Studies Program, Director of Liberal Education, Chair and Professor of the Department of Psychology, and Dean of the College of Arts and Science. A clinical psychologist by training, she divided her teaching effort between the undergraduate program and the doctoral program in clinical psychology. Her research has focused heavily on program development and evaluation, and she has consulted at dozens of universities in the U.S. and abroad on assessment and curriculum development and served for six years as a program faculty member for institutes on general education for the Association of American Colleges and Universities. Under her determined leadership and through her advocacy, Dr. Schilling has diversified the faculty, effected major curricular reform, and inspired her colleagues with her intelligence, good humor, and grace.

The Karen Maitland Schilling prize is awarded by the Office of Student Financial Assistance to one or more Miami University graduating seniors who best exemplify Dr. Schilling's commitment to scholarship and leadership. Preference shall be given to Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGS) and/or Psychology majors or minors, or other students in the College of Arts and Science conducting feminist projects. A committee of WGS faculty shall recommend nominations of the recipient(s) to the Dean of the College of Arts and Science and the Office of Student Financial Assistance.

Support the Program

The Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program has always relied on the generosity of our friends and supporters. We use our unrestricted gift account for incidental expenses that help improve our connections to scholars, teachers, students and community members through small symposia, workshops, gatherings, and travel grants. The gift account, for example, can be used to pay mileage expenses for Women's Studies majors to travel to regional high schools to talk about Women's Studies, to help our students attend conferences, such as the AAUW National Conference for College Women Student Leaders, and to facilitate informal gatherings such as sponsorship of a reception for Dr. Sami Schalk, currently an Assistant Professor of English at SUNY Albany and one of the 2017 Miami '18 of the last 9’ honorees—Sami graduated with a major in Women's Studies and Creative Writing.

Unrestricted Gifts

These gifts allow us to apply your gift to the area of greatest need.

Designated Gifts

In addition to unrestricted gifts, you may specify that your contribution be devoted exclusively to one of the following initiatives.

  • Nellie Craig Award Fund
    Named for the first known African American student at Miami, the Nellie Craig Award offers support to a Miami University scholar whose work focuses on African American Women history and African American Women's and Gender issues.
  • Las Mujeres AwardFund
    This award offers support to a Miami University scholar who provides leadership on Chicana issues and research initiatives in conjunction with the Miami Latin American Studies Program and the Miami University Latina/o Community Coordinator.
  • Miami Tribe Award Fund
    This award offers a support to a Miami University scholar whose research involves American Indian women and women of the Miami tribe. The Miami Tribe Women's Studies Coordinator works closely with the staff of the Myaamia Project based in Oxford, Ohio, and also may travel to Miami tribal locations in Indiana and Oklahoma to meet with women tribal leaders.
  • GLBTQ Studies Endowed Chair Campaign
    The GLBTQ Studies endowed chair campaign is one of the Bicentennial initiatives of the Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program and the GLBTQ Advisory Committee to the Associate Vice President for Institutional Diversity. The campaign seeks to raise $1,000,000 to create an endowed chair in GLBTQ studies.
  • Internship Travel Fund
    This fund will support students who travel outside of southwestern Ohio for WGS-related internships. Depending on resources available in the fund, qualifying students will be awarded small travel grants to cover transportation expenses.
  • Karen Maitland Schilling Prize
    This prize is awarded by the Office of Student Financial Assistance to one or more Miami University graduating seniors who best exemplify Dr. Schilling's commitment to scholarship and leadership. Preference shall be given to Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGS) and/or Psychology majors or minors, or other students in the College of Arts and Science conducting feminist projects. A committee of WGS faculty shall recommend nominations of the recipient(s) to the Dean of the College of Arts and Science and the Office of Student Financial Assistance.

Make a Gift

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