Department of Gender and Women's Studies

Study equality and justice

Choosing to major in gender and women’s studies involves looking at gender, race, class sexuality, and other identity categories from historical and contemporary perspectives. These issues are present in today’s headlines every day and affect people around the country and the globe. This interdisciplinary program is an inclusive approach that will allow you to develop a deeper understanding of how gender plays a role in our world.

  • 100%of students participate in an internship
  • 18average class size at Saint Mary's
  • 100%of students conduct research on a topic of their choice

Notable critics and scholars

The Department of Gender and Women's Studies co-hosted "An Evening with Roxane Gay" last spring. Read more about her visit here.

An Evening with Roxane Gay


Internship preparation and beyond

At Saint Mary’s, you have the opportunity to jumpstart their careers with internships in a variety of fields and roles. Whether locally or around the country, you will be prepared to present yourself confidently and earn internships that will give you insight into a desired career path.

  • Jordan Lolmaugh ’19
    Gender and Women’s Studies and Psychology double major
    Intern at Transgender Resource, Education and Enrichment Services (TREES)
    South Bend, IN

  • Kayla Zellmer ’18
    Gender and Women’s Studies and Psychology double major
    Intern at the Center for Missing Exploited Children
    Washington, DC

  • Taylor Thomas ’18
    Psychology major, minor in Gender and Women’s Studies
    Intern at the Family Justice Center
    South Bend, IN

Kayla Gaughan ’17

Kayla Gaughan, class of 2017Gender and women's studies and political science double major
Tri-State Finance Associate, Democratic National Committee
Washington, DC

In the fall of 2016, Kayla interned as a member of the National Student Advisory Committee for National organization of It’s On Us. She had internships at the White House in the spring of 2016, for the Democratic National Committee in the summer of 2015, and for EMILY's List as a fundraising and events intern in the summer of 2014.


Unique courses and research opportunities

unique gender and women's studies courses

Award-winning faculty will teach your courses and guide you through feminist history and inequality from different perspectives. All students conduct a research project in an area of interest to them and have the opportunity to present at conferences locally and around the country, including the New Directions 2018 Midwest Undergraduate Conference in Gender Studies at the University of Notre Dame co-hosted by the Department of Gender and Women's Studies.

A career that makes a difference

Many students who pursue a major in gender and women’s studies seek to advocate for others, organize and plan coalitions, work in public policy, law, media, or business. The opportunities are endless for graduates with critical thinking skills, public speaking, theory, and interdisciplinary research methods.

  • Payton Moore ’15
    Gender and women’s studies minor
    PhD candidate in Gender and Women's Studies
    University of Kentucky

  • Cara Lutz ’15
    Gender and women’s studies minor
    Account Executive, SSPR, Chicago

  • Elizabeth Desits ’17
    Gender and women’s studies major
    JD candidate, University of Denver

Pair with another major

A flexible curriculum in Gender and Women’s Studies allows you to pair with another major. Common pairings include communication studies, psychology, political science, history, the pre-law track, and others.