A look back at our year

Photo Credit: year in review
by Ellen Kratzer May 13, 2020

Even after a difficult spring semester, we are able to look back on our academic year as a whole with a sense of pride for all we have accomplished.


Our incredible faculty accomplished many things during this academic year.

Kayzak and Burke
  • Emily Kazyak, associate professor of sociology and women's and gender studies, and Kelsy Burke, assistant professor of sociology, were awarded a grant to study religious freedom and sexual/gender minority rights policy by the National Science Foundation.
Persuasive Acts book cover


We’re very proud of our students who accomplished great things this year as well.

This year we awarded three WGS scholarships.

  • Melba Cope Undergraduate Scholarship—Micah Morris
  • Dr. Christine Black Undergraduate Scholarship—Grace Heath, Taylor Woodsmall

We also announced the recipients of our WGS awards.

Celie Knudsen
  • Outstanding Student Achievement Award—Celie Knudsen
  • Karen Dunning Undergraduate Creative/Scholarly Project Award—Tytus Zink
  • Karen Dunning Graduate Creative/Scholarly Project Award—Mallory Marsh
  • WGS Graduate Student Travel Award—Mallory Marsh

We’re very proud of our students in the class of 2020. This year we graduated seven women’s and gender studies majors and eighteen minors along with seven LGBTQ/sexuality studies minors.

Four of our students graduated with honors:

  • Highest Distinction—Simone Droge, Celie Knudsen, Ashley Morrison
  • High Distinction—Julien Hoffman


This year we also saw some new exciting things happen within our program.

Art from Trauma book cover
  • Former director Margaret Jacobs co-founded “Reconciliation Rising,” a podcast that “showcases the lives and work of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in the U.S. who are engaged in honestly confronting painful and traumatic histories, promoting meaningful and respectful dialogue between Natives and non-Natives, and creating pathways to reconciliation.”
  • Alumna Christine Black, MD established a new undergraduate scholarship for the program.

We are proud of our accomplishments from 2019-2020 and we are excited to see everyone back on campus in the fall.