The Institute for Women’s Studies and Services offers a range of academic courses, both interdisciplinary and in the disciplines, that study the diversity of women’s lives and experiences in the U.S. and globally.
Students may elect to minor in women’s studies or may choose an individualized degree program major. Several women’s studies courses are offered for General Studies course credit, Guaranteed State Transfer or in fulfillment of the Multicultural graduation requirement. Students seeking licensure as secondary education teachers in the social sciences may select from a number of women’s studies courses in fulfilling their requirements. Also offered are cooperative education internships in business, government, and community organizations.
Women’s studies values a diverse curriculum, fostering the inclusion of material that highlights the unique elements and intersections of gender, class, sexual orientation, race/ethnicity, and disability— groups that have historically experienced social oppression. Women’s studies identifies and encourages faculty, administrative, and professional mentoring of women students and facilitates collaborative interdisciplinary research on women.
The Institute also provides support services for all students whether or not they elect women’s studies courses. These services include advising, information, and referral; workshops, conferences, and seminars; a newsletter; resources such as The Community Resource and Action Guide and A Guide for Students: The Scholarship Application Process, and a small multimedia library focused on women’s issues.
Information and application materials for a number of scholarships are available through the Institute, among them the Pamela McIntyre-Marcum Scholarship, scholarships from several local branches of the American Association of University Women, and the Executive Women International Scholarship. During the academic year, the Institute convenes the interdisciplinary Front Range Feminist Scholars Colloquium, bringing together faculty, graduate students, and independent scholars from the metropolitan area to share research, curriculum development, and applications of feminist scholarship. The Institute also engages in cooperative ventures with community organizations in education, business, government, and the community, for example, 9-to-5, Polaris Project Colorado and the Colorado Coalition for Women’s History. Finally, to encourage and recognize excellence, the Institute sponsors Outstanding Women Awards annually in the spring.
Individualized Degree Program and Women’s Studies
Students may wish to develop an Individualized Degree Program Major with an emphasis in Women’s Studies. Students may consider learning objectives that encompass: cultural patterns that define women; the study of the historical achievements of women in all disciplines; and exploration of emerging needs and opportunities for women. Emphasis is on both personal and professional growth. These objectives are met within the context of the new scholarship on women, including women of color, ethnic minority women, lesbians, women with disabilities, and international women.
Students should consult with advisors at the Institute for Women’s Studies and Services for recommended courses and the Center for Individualized Learning for Individualized Degree Program requirements.
Women’s studies may be combined effectively with courses in management, organizational development, psychology, history, English, education, social work, nursing, human services, law enforcement, advertising, public relations, marketing, finance, and other fields appropriate to the student’s interest. Students gain a sensitivity to women’s issues and are thus prepared to work with both general and female populations in a variety of areas.
Employment opportunities for women’s studies students are often found in community outreach, law, non-profit organizations, grant writing, and development (e.g. in women’s resource centers). Students might also work in community counseling and consulting or develop workshops or special programming for women in business and industry. Students who plan to work in higher education, law, or medicine may find a women’s studies degree a useful base for graduate or professional study.
The 16 semester-hour Career and Personal Development certificate program offers a comprehensive learning opportunity for persons who wish to expand their academic and personal knowledge base about career-related issues. The CPD certificate is available for students who seek: 1) professional development opportunities, 2) information about issues such as sex discrimination/ harassment in the workplace, or 3) exploration of careers in general.