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December 2012

Recruiting for WGS Faculty
The Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of South Florida invites applications for a full-time, permanent Instructor I. To view the job description, click here and to apply, visit the USF Careers website and search for position 00017222. The deadline for submitting applications is January 11, 2013. The Department of Women's and Gender Studies invites applications for a nine-month, tenure-track Assistant Professor position in Women's Health, with a research and/or teaching focus on China, transnational feminisms, or global intersectionalities. To view the job description click here and to apply, visit the USF Careers website and search for postion 00006603. DEADLINE EXTENDED! Applications deadline is now January 4, 2013.

WGS MA Student Educates US Military Personnel About Sexual Agression

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy
Rick D. West and Heather.

During the summer of 2012, WGS MA student Heather Kozar traveled around the world to educate tens of thousands military personnel about sexual aggression for the Department of the Navy Sexual Assault Response and Prevention Office. Kozar’s alma mater, Central Michigan University is home to Sexual Aggression Peer Advocates (SAPA), a student-run advocacy organization that runs a 24-hour crisis line, online advocacy, and educational programs. SAPA’s most well-know program, “No Zebras, No Excuses,” discusses sexual assault, stalking, sexual harassment, and domestic violence, and demands bystander intervention as a preventative measure. In addition, a strong focus of the program includes ways to support someone who has been affected by sexual aggression. Kozar was one of a cast of 13 advocates doing “No Zebras, No Excuses” training. She traveled to dozens of military bases in North Carolina, Virginia, Connecticut, Hawaii, California, Cuba, and Japan.

Audience at Naval Submarine Base New London in Groton, CT

WGS Interns Shine at the First WGS Internship Showcase

Click on photo to open slideshow.

More than 40 people attended the first WGS Internship Showcase, held at the USF Marshall Center on Dec 4, to celebrate the work of WGS Interns and their sponsor organizations. Dr. Christie Rinck, Director of the Internship Program, welcomed students and guests to the celebration of the research, activism, and service of our Interns to our community.

Sponsors who attended the Showcase included Mickey Castor of the League of Women Voters of Hillsborough County, Marilyn Shamblin of the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay, Barnard Washington of Y.E.S. (Youth Education Services), Courtney Hendrickson of The Haven of RCS, Wendy Vasquez Ernest, of I Know My Plan, Sharon Dues of Sylvia Thomas Center for Adoptive and Foster Families, Ramon Tellado of Tampa Hillsborough Action Plan (THAP), and Michelle Crowder of Sunrise of Pasco County. Twenty  sponsors across Tampa Bay host our interns in their organizations.

Eighteen Interns created posters of their projects to display for the evening. WGS Interns Jackie Horwich, Mary Catherine Bertulfo, and Connor Menneto spoke on behalf of all interns, narrating the lessons they learned and skills they developed in their internships. The program for the evening is here with highlights of each intern’s projects.

Dr. Richard Pollenz, CAS Associate Dean and Director of Undergraduate Research, said of the event, “I thought the event tonight was fabulous.  For a first time cohort I thought it went very well and was very professional.  I was struck by the research that I saw in some of the posters. I think you have started something really powerful and would like to be involved as this continues to develop and move forward.”

We are especially grateful to Dr. Pollenz for underwriting the printing of the posters and to Dr. Allison Cleveland-Roberts, Assistant Dean of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies College of Arts and Sciences, for funding for refreshments.




WGS major and intern, Kiyanna Sawyer, published an article on the website Fitsmi. The site is geared toward teen girls who are struggling with their weight. Read the article here.





November 2012

Open House: Build it and they will come!

Elizabeth Clifford, Sandy Lovins, Ray Gonzalez, and USF Facilities Staff

At the WGS Open House, Thursday, Nov 29, we opened our doors to students, friends, affiliates, staff, and administrators to show off our new home on the second floor of CMC. Informal tours, great food, slide shows on every computer, and terrific conversation ensued.

We were especially delighted to show our department “in use” to Elizabeth Clifford, the fabulous interior designer who created our new space, and her boss Ray Gonzalez, Assistant Director for Facilities Planning. Sandy Lovins, Vice-President for Administrative Services, was central at every step to making our new home beautiful, functional, and welcoming.

In the spirit of our WGS home and community, open house is every day! If you missed the event, please call to arrange a personal tour. Anytime! We’d love to show you around.


Ray Gonzalez, Elizabeth Bell and Elizabeth Clifford

Congratulations to WGS MA Graduate Mary Catherine Whitlock and current WGS MA student Eileen Dabrowski who have just been selected to be a Graduate Student Ambassadors. This select group of graduate students serves as an advisory group to the Graduate School Dean, mentors new graduate students, and serves as official student representatives for the Graduate School. It's a huge honor to be selected for this very small elite group, and Mary Catherine and Eileen will serve well. They makes us look good!

WGS undergraduate advisor and adjunct instructor, Dr. Christie Rinck received the Outstanding Undergraduate Advising Award at USF--one of only six given in the whole university! President Judy Genshaft and Provost Ralph Wilcox presented Dr. Rinck with this award at the Faculty Honors and Awards Reception held at the Alumni Center on November 26, 2012.

Walking Again for Women

November 16, 2012, the Women’s Status Committee sponsored the second Walking for Women at USF, to encourage USF staff, students, and faculty to build a daily walk into their schedules. More than 40 people braved the brisk, fall afternoon to walk the one-mile route (attach map here) and earn a WSC water bottle and energy snacks for the effort.As part of the WSC emphasis on health and well-being, the purpose of the Walk is to enable USF staff to find walking partners, agree on a walking schedule, and motivate each other to walk for at least 30 minutes each day.


Congrats to WGS Minor and recent USF graduate Aniska Tonge who won the title of Miss Virgin Islands 2012. "Tonge strives to never have that unyielding focus on her beauty over her value as a person," and she credits her WGS courses “Women and Media” and “Issues of Feminism” classes with Professor Kim Golombisky for helping her understand these lessons. Read the full article.

WGS and Stampede to Success

WGS Major and Triota Honor Society President Brieanna Nestler joined WGS Chair Dr. Elizabeth Bell at Stampede to Success on Saturday, November 17th. They talked to potential USF students about the importance of women's and gender studies issues and career paths for majors.


WGS Teaching Workshops

WGS Instructor Dr. Jessie Turner lead her second Feminist Pedagogy Workshop centered on online teaching. Her workshop "Multimedia Resources and Tools for Implementing Online Teaching Best Practices" built on the previous session's discussion about course design and optimizing student learning. If you are interested in attending future workshops, please email Ginny Scott at to be added to our mailing list.




Congrats to WGS MA student, Jessica Collard, who successfully defended her thesis "Can you believe she did THAT?! Breaking the code of "good" mothering in 1970s horror films."

Inaugural WGS Study Session, "Cram Slam" a success

The WGS community met in our new space in CMC for Cram Slam to get homework help, study with peers and discuss various feminist issues. Join us next Wednesday from 5-9pm in CMC 202 for round 2.







WGS MA student gets UN job in NYC

Update 11/7/2012: Morgan Eubanks (pictured right, second from left), WGS master's student finishing her thesis, is a Communications Intern for the New York office of the Committee on the Status of Women for the United Nations. Her tasks include updating the CSW Handbook along with the Committee website, and facilitating and attending events such as a recent panel with Charlotte Bunch. Her academic interest in and knowledge about refugees and Truth Commissions from her thesis research was a significant benefit during her multi-stage interview process. Her supervisor, Susan O'Malley, is a UN Representative for the International Federation of Business and Professional Women, as well as the Corresponding Secretary for the Working Group on Girls. Moe says of her time here at WGS: “The WGS program has seriously been incredible - it has been awesome knowing what people are talking about and being able to educate women on feminist methods, theory. ”


Early Morning Star

WGS and Sociology Associate Professor Michelle Hughes Miller shined on "Mom Squad," during the CBS-10 News WTSP's Morning Show. And at 5:40am! Michelle answered questions about some mother's concerns for tomorrow's election and the need for information on food labels. When asked to respond "Yes" or "No," Michelle answered, "Professors never answer 'yes' or 'no.'" Way to go, Michelle! Smart, witty, and accessible--doing the important work of a public intellectual. Watch the "Mom Squad" segment.

October 2012

WGS Impresses at CAS Research Showcase

WGS made its first appearance this year at the College of Arts & Sciences annual "Oktoberfest" research showcase. WGS faculty and undergraduate students were in attendance to highlight the awesome work done in the department this past year. Pictured are WGS majors Mia Lawrie and Mary Catherine Bertulfo.


WGS MA and Undergrad students attend Rally Our Way Forward/I Am Choice Rally

WGS student leaders attended the Rally Our Way Foward event in St. Petersburg and a few even had the opportunity to meet celebrated American feminist and journalist Gloria Steinem. Visit and "Like" our Facebook page to view more photos!




WGS and Potential Majors Shine at Stampede

Dana and Dr. Maryann Windey with USF Triota President Brieanna Nestler

Stampede for Success, held Saturday, October 20, at USF Marshall Center, was a bonanza as WGS representatives talked with high school students and their parents about the value of the WGS degree and Internship program. Paloma Adams, a senior honors' student at Blake High School for the Performing Arts in Tampa, and her parents, Martha and David Adams, asked terrific questions about WGS, our classes, and Paloma's future as a WGS and Mass Comm double-major. Dana Windey, in the IB Program at Cape Coral High School, and her mother, Dr. Maryann Windey, discovered that WGS classes featuring sexual violence and intimate partner abuse fit right in with Dana's plans to explore Psychology and women's issues.

Dr. Christie Rinck chats with Paloma Adams
and her father David Adams

WGS representatives, armed with departental brochures, tatoos, and Hershey's Kisses, brought the major to life. Brieanna Nestler, President of the USF Chapter of Triota, the National Women's Studies Honors' Society, shined as she described her double major in WGS and Sociology, as well as her summer internship with USF's Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity. Dr. Christie Rinck, WGS Undergraduate Advisor and Internship Director, offered her stellar advice on how to successfully navigate the program, and Elizabeth Bell, Chair of WGS, bragged on everything and everyone--especially on Brieanna and Dr. Rinck.
We've got our fingers crossed that we'll be welcoming Paloma and Dana to our WGS family in fall 2013. 

Miss Representation Screening

More than 400 people attended a Junior League screening of MissRepresentation, the documentary film on representations of women in the media by Jennifer Siebel Newsom, at the Tampa Theatre on October 16. A panel discussion followed the screening, moderated by Tampa Bay Times columnist Ernest Hooper and included panelists Elizabeth Bell, Dr. Dae Sheridan, and Janice Rodriguez. Hooper's article on the movie, discussion and why role models for young girls are more important than ever is here.




WGS 1st Feminist Pedagogy Workshop: Online Teaching with Dr. Jessie Turner

WGS introduced a new teaching workshop series dedicated improving feminist classrooms. The inaugural session, "7 Best Practices for Online Teaching" was lead by our new instructor, Dr. Jessie Turner, and discussed the best practices in design and implementation of an online course in order to optimize student learning. More workshops are coming and all disciplines are invited to attend. Watch our "Events" announcements for the next workshop!




Introductions and Congratulations
Our new federal work study student, Rebecca Mallick began this month and we have more new majors, Tiffany M, Hunter M, Ariel J, and Lola R. Our home is your home, and we're thrilled y'all are part of the WGS family.

Newly minted WGS MA grad, Zoe Fine is now working as an Employment Specialist for Washington & Alyeska Vocational Services. Her job is all about supporting people who have developmental and other kinds of disabilities land, maintain, and succeed in their jobs and workplaces. Zoe focuses on matching the unique talents of each individual with whom she works with the specific need of employers. For more information please feel free to check out the WAVS website for her organization at or email her at Congratulations Zoe!Welcome to our new WGS majors !

September 2012

Best USF Faculty Quotation Ever
So says Vickie Chachere, News Manager, University of South Florida Communications, about Kim Golombisky's recent soundbite in the Tampa Tribune about the popular novel series 50 Shades of Grey. What did Kim say? “That's a Disney love story — with handcuffs and ticklers." Read the whole story here.

Sara Crawley, half-time WGS teaching faculty and Associate Professor of Sociology, makes the news!
Professor Rob Benford, Chair of Sociology, writes, "Dr. Sara Crawley was recently featured in USF’s Research and Innovation News and CAS News for her Gender, Sexuality and Power project in post-Soviet countries. To read more, click here. Sara’s work is creating new opportunities for scholars in several countries to acquire knowledge related to gender studies and feminist and queer theory as well as enhancing USF’s and Sociology’s global reputation.  Well done, Sara!"
Faculty, students, and staff of WGS second that!

August 2012

We've moved! Women's and Gender Studies has settled into our new home on the newly renovated second floor of CMC (formerly PHY). Please come by and visit us in the new space. CMC (CAS Multidisciplinary Complex) is directly west of the Library, across LeRoy Collins Blvd. Look for the big CMC sign outside the building's front door. Here's a campus map.

Congratulations to the Women's and Gender Studies graduates of Summer 2012! We are proud to recognize Marisa Adams, Lisa Ranon and Rima Tejwani (pictured above) who graduated with their BA in Women's and Gender Studies and our MA graduate Mary Catherine Whitlock who will continue at USF as a PhD student in Sociology. Congratulations and good luck, ladies.

July 2012

WGS faculty, staff, and students have had a terrific year, as anyone who follows this website knows. But click here to see a snapshot of all our good work in two handy pages.

June 2012

Congratulations to WGS MA student Mary Catherine Whitlock for successfully defending her thesis, "Selling the Third Wave: The Commodification and Consumption of the Flat Track Roller Girl." Mary Catherine will begin her PhD in Sociology at USF this fall.

Kudos to Kim Golombisky for her prominent and important entry, “Feminism,” in Sage’s newly released Encyclopedia of Gender in Media edited by Mary Kosut. Capturing the issues, development, and critical turns in media and feminism in the U.S. is no small task. Kim does it  in six pages. Brava! Kim also points out that From Mouse to Mermaid: Politics of Film, Gender, and Culture (Elizabeth Bell, Laura Sells, and Lynda Haas, eds.)  is one of the “classic books” listed in the Encyclopedia’s Resource Guide.






Happy Birthday Title IX--40 and still fabulous!
"No person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving federal financial assistance." --US Department of Labor, Title IX Education Amendments of 1972.

Passed in 1972, Title IX requires gender equity for boys and girls in every educational program that receives federal funding. The law covers ten key areas: Access to Higher Education, Career Education, Education for Pregnant and Parenting Students, Employment, Learning Environment, Math and Science, Sexual Harassment, Standardized Testing and Technology. To learn about Title IX at USF, you can read the USF Title IX Committee's Annual Report to the President 2011/12.

The Conversation Continues
Women’s and Gender Studies hosts World Café “Conversation2.0” to Launch WGS Society

Fifty-two women gathered on Wednesday, June 6 at USF’s Alumni Center to talk. Just to talk. While the laughter throughout the evening was abundant, the seriousness of women’s talk permeated the discussions. Elizabeth Bell, Chair of USF Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, welcomed all to the event and spoke of women’s talk as important work.


Elizabeth Bell, WGS Chair

Bell listed just some of the ways that women have been discouraged from talking—in public and to each other. “Admonitions against women’s talk have always been severe. From Corinthians ‘Let your women keep silent in the churches,’ to the ducking stools of 17th century Europe, to the prohibitions against women giving speeches in 18th century America. Even today, the words for women’s talk—nagging, whining, small talk, gossip—are ways to diminish its worth.”

WGS Society Launch
Like the consciousness raising sessions of the 1960s women’s liberation movement, “The Conversation2.0” invited women from the community, USF, and faculty and students of the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, to share their experiences. Conversation2.0 launched the WGS Society, the new alumnae and friends group for the Department of Women’s and Gender Studies. Genie Skypek, Tampa psychologist, is one of the core organizers of the WSG Society, along with WGS MA alumnae Zoe Fine and Kelly Wagner.

“The USF Women’s Studies program was established in 1972—one of the oldest programs in the nation. In 1987, we offered the first bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies in Florida. In 1997, we began offering the Master’s degree. And yet WGS has never had an alumnae group,” Bell said.


Bell continued with her recruitment pitch: “It’s time to round up those forty years of USF Women’s Studies graduates, to partner with people in the community interested in gender equity and gender issues, and to ally with USF folks who share our interests in feminism and social justice.”


Genie Skypek also welcomed participants and emphasized the benefits of joining the WGS Society: invitations to USF and WGS events, film screenings, guest speakers, and priority invitations to the Conversation. More than 60 individuals have joined the WGS Society. The big push to contact forty years of WGS alumnae through the USF Alumni Association begins in July.


Genie Skypek

The Stars Came Out
During Conversation2.0, women shared experiences and ideas across feminist generations. Participants’ name tags indicated their generation by decade. Women aged 70 and over wore gold stars, women in their 60s wore silver stars, and on down to the 20-year-olds who wore “green” stars. A “world café” discussion format moved people to a new table every 30 minutes. As women moved to a new table to work on a new question, “stars” from every generation joined a new table.

Marlene Springer, Joan Chase, Eleanor Cecil, and Ruth Talley—all wearing gold stars of the “practically perfect in every way” age group—spoke of the early feminist movement of the 1960s. Springer said, “That was a terribly acrimonious time. Feminists disagreed with each other about liberation, especially the separatists who wanted nothing to do with men. I think we’ve learned better.”




Joan Chase, Eleanor Cecil and BJ Star

Joan Chase, retired clinical psychologist, spoke of the early wage gap when women were thankful to have any professional job outside the home. “I was hired at considerably less salary than the men in the medical school. And every year, the gap between our salaries grew bigger.”

Eleanor Cecil, long time educator and activist, is a member of the Tampa Chapter of the National Organization for Women (NOW). Cecil arrived with her “NixSix” button, offering to run workshops for any groups interested in learning about the negative impacts on women of Proposition Six on Florida’s November ballot. Ruth Talley emphasized the importance of supporting women candidates for political office. She offered Emily’s List as a terrific political resource.


Eleanor Cecil

The Survey Said
Participants voted on preferences for the evening’s topics: from preferred gender pronouns, images of contemporary housewives, to girls and boys’ toys at the Disney store. The top vote-getters for discussion were:
Are we are experiencing a backlash against women today? If so, why?
For white, middle-class women, feminism opened up the professions. Yet 70% of women workers in America are not professionals but work in retail, service, clerical positions, or health care. Have working class women’s lives been changed enough by feminism?
If you could offer one word of advice to a girl today, what would that be?

The youngest women in the crowd, high school students Beth Burford and Karey Lipham, were guests of Julie Dumois-Sands, an alumna of the Women’s and Gender Studies MA program. They listened intently to words of advice, including Ayele Hunt’s recommendation: “Don’t wait until college to learn about feminism. Start in high school. It will change the way you look at the world.”

Inspiring, Depressing, and Extending Our Classrooms

Emily Ryalls


All the young women—green and red stars—spoke of the value of listening to their elders. Emily Ryalls, Visiting Assistant Professor in Communication, also attended the first Conversation. “Just like last year, it was one of the best things I've done this year. While at times depressing, it was also very inspirational.” Christie Rinck, Undergraduate Advisor in WGS, also spoke of the double-bind of inspiration and depression and the difficulty of “winding down after getting all riled up.”

Jan Roberts, longtime supporter of Women’s Studies at USF and former member of the WGS Community Advisory Board, was delighted to have met new WGS faculty. Michelle Hughes Miller, Sara Crawley, Diane Price-Herndl, Ednie Garrison, and Kim Golombisky all shared their knowledge of women’s issues, feminism, and gender theories.

Jan Roberts and Elizabeth Bell


Golombisky said, “The Conversation is an opportunity to extend our classrooms and to take feminism and gender theories into the world.” WGS Society members will have access to WGS faculty for guest speaking engagements, as well as opportunities to audit online and face-to-face classes.

For more information about the WGS Society, its benefits to community members and alumnae, and how to join, go to

Click on photo to view the slideshow. Photos by Ginny Scott.