Nov 292010
Authors: Vashti Batjargal

What was once referred to as the Office of Women’s Programs and Studies has now split into the Women and Gender Advocacy Center and the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research.

The Women and Gender Advocacy Center will stay in the Student Services Building and the Gender Advocacy Center is awaiting a spot in Aylesworth Hall with the Ethnic Studies Department.

“Both units were really trying to do a lot, trying to grow. It was hard with resources for them to do that,” said Eulanda Sanders, chair of the board for the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research. “The Office of Women’s Programs was really strained trying to house the service parts and the studies part.”

With the shift from the Women’s Studies certificate to a minor, the office went through a proposal process with the faculty from the Ethnic Studies and the Women’s Studies affiliate faculty voting on whether or not to place Women’s Studies under the Ethnic Studies Department.

“We felt that our affiliation with Ethnic Studies makes sense because our underlying mission for both programs are similar … and because there were quite a few classes cross-listed with ethnic studies already,” Sanders said. “Looking at intersectionality is important for both.”

The women’s studies minor also includes many Ethnic Studies courses in its curriculum, which was another reason the unity of the two made sense, said Sanders.

“I started taking the classes that I was interested in not knowing that I would get the (minor),” said Marylou Garcia, a senior international studies major and dual Spanish and women’s studies minors. “It deserves to be a minor when you need 21 credits to get a certificate.”

The goal for the Center for Women’s Studies and Gender Research is to have a concentration in place for Women’s Studies by fall 2011, and a major by fall 2012.

The program also intends to identify, support and highlight the research CSU faculty is working on in relation to women and gender issues, Sanders said, and eventually build a strong base in publications, creative scholarships and grants.

“That will help us support undergraduate research and graduate research,” Sanders said. “It’s important that we bring the next generation of researchers along.”

Staff writer Vashti Batjargal can be reached at

  • At the end of the semester the Center of Women’s Studies and Gender Research will move to Aylesworth SE, Rm 357
  • Women and Gender Advocacy Center will stay in 112 Student Services
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