What You Can Do With a Gender & Sexuality Studies Degree


“We have students going into public health, international policy, journalism, politics, filmmaking, education- careers that allow them to effect change.” 

-Beverly Guy-Sheftall, Founding Director of the Women’s Research and Resource Center

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Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies majors, double majors, minors, and graduate minors develop skills highly valued by employers and graduate schools. These include: critical thinking, research, analysis, problem solving, knowledge of social structures and change, an understanding of diversity and global perspectives, and oral/written communication.

Developing a strong understanding of gender, race, sexuality, gender identity, class, dis/ability, and other social categories gives students a strong background for work in numerous fields where a specialization in social and identity issues is important.

Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies specialists increasingly take on ever more critical roles, both internationally and within local communities. Graduates in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies work in advocacy or social services-related positions, arts and literature, education, law, community development, medical professions, human resources, business, and government. The preparation in critical thinking and social awareness is also an excellent background for students pursuing graduate and professional degrees.

Whether you major/minor to begin your path in social justice work or you double major to further specialize and bolster your qualifications for employment or applying for graduate school, a degree in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies demonstrates to an employer that you have developed a breadth of knowledge from a diverse curriculum that only be developed from an interdisciplinary perspective. This is highly prized by employers and also can provide students with a strong foundation for advanced study in sociology, anthropology, rhetoric, literature, philosophy, religious studies, public policy, law, and other fields.

Related fields for double majoring and minoring include Criminal Justice, Sociology, English, Languages and Linguistics, History, Psychology, Anthropology, Philosophy, Business, Political Science, Government, Public Health, Counseling, Social Work, Religious Studies, Communication Studies, and Art.

MA & PhD Programs in Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies

UniversityDegree OfferedProgram of Study
Arizona State UniversityPhDGender Studies
Indiana University, BloomingtonPhDGender Studies
Texas Woman's UniversityMA/PhDMulticultural Women’s and Gender Studies
The Ohio State UniversityMA/PhDWomen's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
University of Arizona PhDGender and Women's Studies
University of California, Los AngelesMA en route to PhD Degree
Gender Studies
University of California, Santa BarbaraDual MA/Ph.DFeminist studies
University of MichiganJoint PhD ProgramsWomen’s Studies & English
Women’s Studies & History
Women’s Studies & Psychology
University of Texas, AustinMA

Dual MA Degrees
Women's and Gender Studies

Women's and Gender Studies/Information Studies
Women's and Gender Studies/Public Affairs
Oregon State UniversityPhDWomen, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
University of Minnesota, Minneapolis PhDFeminist Studies
Brandeis UniversityMAWomen's, Gender, and Sexuailty Studies


Advice to Students Applying to MA & PhD Programs in WGSS

[gview file=”https://dept-wp.nmsu.edu/wsprogram/files/2015/07/NWSAAdviceEssays_GradStudents.pdf”]


Occupations Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Students Have Gone On To

from Barbara F. Luebke & Mary Ellen Reilly’s Women’s Studies Graduates: The First Generation (1995)

journalist battered women’s center director psychotherapist
advocate for hate crime/domestic violence victims musician congressional fellow
archivist business owner public and government relations manager
law enforcement nurse-midwife cooperative grocery manager
lawyer clinical social worker rape crisis program director
art therapist Planned Parenthood clinic coordinator director of program for inner-city teenagers
librarian college professor recreational therapist
artist program associate at human rights organization doctor
minister communications consultant sexual assault/sexual abuse educator

Career Resources

NMSU Career Services

National Women’s Studies Association Job Bank

Feminist Jobs (Job Bank)

Suggestions for What You Can Do With Women’s, Gender, & Sexuality Studies Degree

Advancing Women


Scholarships and Grants for Women

Workplace Diversity Job Bank

Academic Careers Online

Center for American Women and Politics

Women in Higher Education

University Job Bank

Transform The World: What Can You Do with a Degree in Women’s Studies

A Matter of Degrees

Why WS Is Not an “Easy” Major

The Evolution of American Women’s Studies