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Overview of WGS


The Women's Studies Department at the University of South Florida is one of the oldest in the nation. In 1987, USF became the first public university in Florida to offer the B.A. in Women's Studies.

By 1991, the program had grown to include a full-time faculty of eight, achieving departmental status with the USF College of Arts & Sciences. In 1997, the Board of Regents granted permission to offer a Master's Degree in Women's Studies.

In 2007-2008, the Department experienced a number of faculty retirements, moves to other universities, and moves to other USF departments. With the support of the College of Arts and Sciences and Interim Chairs Marilyn Myerson and Jennifer Lewis, rebuilding began.

2010 and 2011 marked a number of changes in the Department: two new faculty received joint-appointments; two USF faculty moved to Women's Studies; a permanent chair was appointed; and we changed our department's name to Women's and Gender Studies to better reflect the work of questioning gender binaries and hierarchies.

Today, the USF Department of Women's and Gender Studies serves more than 1700 undergraduate students a year in our General Education classes.We boast 180 WGS majors, double-majors, and minors; 10 students are pursuing Master's degrees and teaching WGS classes.

We are one of the three master's degree-granting programs in the State of Florida. The USF Department of Women's and Gender Studies also offers a graduate certificate for USF graduate students in other degree programs.

What is Women's Studies?

The Department of Women’s and Gender Studies at the University of South Florida follows the mission of the National Women’s Studies Association and is an institutional member of that body.

“NWSA is committed to support and promote feminist teaching, research, and professional and community service at the pre-K through post-secondary levels. Integral to this commitment is understanding the political ramifications in our teaching, research and service.” For more information, please visit their website at