Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
Education (Educational Leadership)
According to the State University of New York-Oneanta (2013), “women’s and gender studies is an interdisciplinary field of study that takes gender as its main category of analysis, and works to reframe the place of gender as essential to the workings of social, cultural, political, and economic systems.” These programs, especially at community colleges, have not benefitted from much research and/or scholarship within the last ten years. For this reason, I chose to explore the history of women’s and gender studies programs at community colleges, their place within higher education, and the creation and maintenance of such programs.
A case study methodology was used to conduct this study. Eight community college faculty, all who identified as women, were interviewed. Data were gathered from semi-structured interviews and analysis of institutional artifacts such as program reviews and sample syllabi. Through the data analysis, specific themes emerged regarding women’s and gender studies programs at the community college level, including faculty perspectives on why students enroll in women’s and gender studies courses, issues of intersectionality and identity within women’s and gender studies programs, and the importance of women’s and gender studies programs at community colleges.
Several recommendations were provided that could help strengthen women’s and gender studies programs at the community college level, as well as possible topics for future research. This study has implications not only for women’s and gender studies programs at community colleges, but within higher education. All educational institutions—regardless of the students they serve and the level of women’s and gender studies courses that are offered—can benefit from learning about the involvement of community colleges and the value in creating alliances to further increase women’s and gender studies programs throughout academia.
Alissa Kristine Stoehr
Stoehr, Alissa Kristine, "The present status of women's and gender studies programs at community colleges" (2016). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 15197.