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Program overview

Major/minor: Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies

The gender, sexuality, and women's studies program at Cornell College provides an interdisciplinary, cross-cultural perspective on gender and society. Through an examination of feminist theories, methodologies, and movements, students explore the social, political, and cultural experiences of women.

Students explore the diversity of gender and sexuality by analyzing the intersections among the statuses, constructs, and identities of gender, race, ethnicity, culture, class, sexuality, and nationality. Students also study the interlocking mechanisms of oppression, including sexism, heterosexism, racism, classism, ageism, ableism, and colonialism, as well as processes of ethnocentrism, heteronormativity, privilege, and other forms of bias that may contribute to limited or distorted views of women's lives.

In addition to a set of core courses, the program includes a wide range of cross-listed courses from disciplines as varied as art, biology, history, religion, politics, sociology and others.

Experiential learning

The program actively seeks to engage students in activist and service projects. Students are also encouraged to pursue internships, off-campus study, and campus leadership roles as a way to integrate classroom and real-world learning.


Graduates of the program have left Cornell with the knowledge and skills to pursue a wide range of careers and graduate studies, including but not limited to work with victims of domestic violence, a directorship of a campus women's center, and graduate studies in social work, public health, women's history, sociology, and political science.