Why Do WGSS?  What Good Will It Be?

If you aren't sure what you want, either academically or career-wise, look here.

Our College of Liberal Studies
Excellence Award Winners!

Current year's winner is on our Homepage!
Rosanne St. Sauver

Roseanne St. Sauver, APRIL 2012
Kayleigh Day

Kayleigh Day, 2011

Carrie Bero

Carrie Bero, 2010

Alana Erickson

Alana Erickson, 2009

Amanda Jansen

Amanda Jansen, 2008

Many students love Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies courses, but wonder whether majoring or minoring in it is a good idea.  Our assessment process tells us that our students gain a great deal from WGSS courses. 

What WGSS Students Gain from Our Courses

You will enhance your critical thinking skills.

  • You will learn to generate new ideas by shifting the paradigm. 
  • You will learn how to solve problems and to use your university skills to do so. 
  • You will learn how to provide evidence to support your ideas. 
  • You will learn the value of writing as a powerful tool for thinking.
  • You will even learn how to generate evidence that holds water, and how to recognize "evidence" and arguments that don't stand up to scrutiny.

You will advance your ability to communicate, especially "on your feet." 

  •  Many WGSS courses center around discussion, backed up by reading and writing. 
  •  Most students are nervous about speaking in class at first, but our students find that the issues they encounter in WGSS unleash their tongues.

    As you gain more information and sharpen your analytical skills, both your speaking and your writing improve.

You will be equipped with skills to produce tangible results.

  •  Many WGSS courses embed applied research into course assignments.  In other words, you tackle a specific problem using the theories, facts, and research skills you are learning in college.
  •  WGSS links so well with so many career paths that many of our courses embed service-learning experiences that offer students hands-on experience.
  •  Many WGSS students eventually choose to do either an internship or an applied research project, or both.  Often these projects link to their major and career goals, and some projects draw upon or develop into collaborations that benefit the whole community.

You will develop your sense of self and increase your self-confidence

  •  This is a function of the entire college experience, but our students report that the way we teach WGSS courses, as participatory rather than passive lecture-only, provides them with much more opportunity to grow as individuals than many of their other courses have.

What can you do with these skills and attitudes, and with the knowledge you gain from WGSS?

WorldWideLearn lists a very similar set of skills to those we've identified, and a good basic list of actual jobs.

Michigan State University's Women's Studies website explains both the general skills gained from any liberal arts degree and the additional skills from Women's Studies.  This page also lists specific jobs in several of the 38 categories of jobs revealed by a national study of the first graduates with Women's Studies majors back in 1995 (Barbara F. Reilly and Mary Ellen Luebke, Women's Studies Graduates:  the First Generation (New York:  Teacher's College Press, 1995).

For more information on career planning, see the Career Planning page on this website.