Feminist studies is an interdisciplinary field of analysis that investigates how relations of gender are embedded in social, political, and cultural formations. The undergraduate program in Feminist Studies provides students with a unique interdisciplinary and transnational perspective. The department emphasizes theories and practices derived from multiracial and multicultural contexts.
With over 150 students declared as majors, UCSC is home to one of the oldest and largest departments focused on gender and sexuality studies in the U.S. Since its founding as Women's Studies in 1974, it has contributed to the development of internationally recognized feminist scholarship. The major in Feminist Studies offers opportunities to pursue careers in fields such as law, social services, public policy, health care, and higher education. Feminist Studies also encourages community service through faculty-sponsored internships and a mutually supportive and collaborative teaching and learning environment.
Feminist studies prepares undergraduates for a variety of careers. The B.A. degree in Feminist Studies provides excellent grounding for undergraduates with career aspirations, for example, in law, health, public administration, education, and social services. Students wishing to pursue doctoral work will also find that interdisciplinary training in feminist studies equips them with theoretical and methodological strengths in most disciplines and applied research fields.
Specialists in feminist studies are being hired as consultants in industry, higher education, insurance companies, and human resource firms. State and federal government agencies require people who have special training in understanding gender relations. Finally, educational institutions need specialists to develop and administer feminist studies programs, women's centers, and other institutional structures designed specifically to study and assist women.