Women’s Studies Program at East Tennessee State University Enhances Its Curriculum

The women’s studies program at East Tennessee State Univerity in Johnson City began as a minor degree and offered its first bachelor’s degree program in 2007. The program has now updated its curriculum and will now be known as the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies program.

“The name change from Women’s Studies to Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies more accurately reflects advances in the field, the academic content of the minor, language used in the discipline, and equity and inclusion trends in higher education and at our university,” says program director Phyllis Thompson, an associate professor in the department of literature and language.

Dr. Thompson points out that workforce trends show a need for training in equity and inclusion, critical thinking and community engagement skills, which employers seek in new hires. “Our ‘Leadership through Diversity’ focus prepares students to meet these job expectations and highlights our emphasis on applied learning, translatable research, collaboration, and leadership,” she said. “Experiential learning opportunities in WGSS provide field-related internships to build on lessons learned in the classroom, test assumptions, and practice skill-based knowledge. Research funds are available to support student scholarship through professionalization workshops and conference presentations.”

Dr. Thompson joined the faculty at East Tennessee States University in 2005. She is a graduate of the Univerity of North Carolina at Greensboro. Dr. Thompson earned a master’s degree at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina, and a Ph.D. in English from Louisiana State University.

Filed Under: Women's Studies


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