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Testimonials

There are few programs in college educational systems that challenge and inspire you to look beyond what people tell you to think, but Feminist Studies has given me an entirely new perspective on myself and the world around me. This way of critical thinking has prepared me for any job I wish to pursue.
Renata Sanchez
I decided to major in Feminist Studies as well as History because Feminist Studies allows me to incorporate an academic analysis of oppression and social change into my field of study. Feminist Studies has helped me to think critically about the way we do history and some of the problems of traditional scholarship.
Grace LaVance
Feminist Studies gave me an illuminating and practical education in social justice and how to live my own, uniquely feminist life. I draw cartoons for a living and the values of representation through art and the politics of the personal have become an essential part of how I write and draw...

...Everyone can find a way in which feminist studies is uniquely vital to what they do.

Emma Steinkellner, '16
Completing a minor in Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies granted me the opportunity to explore intersectionality (with race, ethnicity, ability, sexuality, and gender) with other students who were equally - if not more - interested in discussing these topics. I appreciated having faculty, advisors, and fellow peers in my classes who cared...

...about having these important conversations.  My beliefs regarding identity were constantly challenged, allowing me to grow intellectually and form a critical societal lens.  I am currently pursuing a Master's degree in social work, armed and ready with the feminist and queer theories - and social justice frameworks - I learned from FGSS.  I am the deconstructionist, activist, and feminist I am today because of FGSS; and for that, I am incredibly appreciative.

Jessica Hernandez, '16
I chose to major in Feminist Studies because it was one of the few programs at Stanford where I could study issues that were directly pertinent to my life and my activism. There was never a concern that the knowledge I was learning was not 'practical,' or not 'applied' to the real world because the theories and methods I was exposed to...

... were directly related to how to challenge and eradicate power inequalities. Feminist Studies, thus, allowed for me to seamlessly integrate my queer and feminist activism with my coursework.  The most important aspect of the experience was writing my Honors Thesis on white supremacy and the LGBTI movement in South Africa as this allowed me to integrate theory with practice, have international research and activism experience, and grow as a scholar and activist. Feminist Studies helped me develop an analysis of power relations and an appreciation for compassion and solidarity that I will take to all new positions (professional or not) in my life.

Alok Vaid-Menon, '13
I was originally drawn to Feminist Studies after taking Helen Longino's Feminist Theories and Methods Across the Disciplines graduate seminar freshman year. It completely opened up my world--

I had found the academic language and a space where I felt seen and encouraged to grow, while simultaneously encouraged to engage in the program's own growth and development. I also greatly valued the agency, even as a first-year student, to shape my own focus/concentration, something I did not find in either of my minors, or the other majors I explored before ultimately declaring Feminist Studies. My concentration was Representation of Women of Color in Written and Visual Media, which opened me to a much broader range of classes than would have otherwise been available to me. I took classes in departments such as Film Studies, Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, Theater and Performance Studies, Iberian and Latin American Culture, and even International Policy Studies.

Being a Feminist Studies major allowed me to immerse myself in classes that validated my presence in the world as a queer chicana lesbian, and also provided the intellectual and emotional space to develop a voice in the classroom, in the program, and in my Stanford communities. I value this greatly because that critical engagement formed the foundation with which I carry myself in the world today. 
 
I have been living in San Francisco for three years, and I am currently attending law school here as well. I have found that my Feminist Studies background grounds my approaches to legal issues, and gives me a unique perspective in the classroom and in the profession in general.
Monica Alcazar, '13
Feminist Studies has completely changed my life. The ability to think critically about social hierarchies (e.g., gender, race, class, sexuality, ability, etc.) has changed my perspective on the world and has broadened and deepened my understanding of many social issues.
Anonymous '12
I wrote a creative honors thesis in Feminist Studies under the advising of Professor Valerie Miner, and am currently a first year medical student at UC San Francisco. Being part of this program was a wonderful part of my Stanford experience.

The education and community I found at the Clayman Institute continues to serve, challenge, and inspire me many years later. Just a few examples:


My friendship with Pooja Desai began in a FSGS sophomore seminar course six years ago, but I am still learning from her, most recently through emails about her research on gender disparities in female physicians.   Last year I self-published Uprooted: An Anthology on Gender and Illness. The seed funding for this project came from the Francisca Lopez Prize that I received for my feminist studies honors thesis in 2013. My thesis advisor, Professor Valerie Miner, supported the concept of the anthology in its infancy, and graciously judged our winning entry.   I am beyond impressed (though not surprised) that Brittany Bennett, with whom I had the privilege of workshopping our theses, is now the author of an incredible, best-selling novel "The Mothers". In May 2017 I am leading a book group about her novel for students in the UCSF School of Medicine.
 

Megan Winkelman