GSFS Majors Need Permanent Faculty, Intro Course

Tory Sparks, Talia Nadel, and Tony Moaton

To the Editors:

Oberlin’s Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies majors, minors and allies are asking for student support of our petition to the Dean’s office to hire a faculty member for the GSFS Institute (we currently do not have the status of a department or even a program).

Oberlin College prides itself on the history of its stance on gender issues, and we believe that this legacy is not currently being maintained academically. Oberlin’s peer institutions have well-established Gender Studies departments, while Oberlin’s GSFS Institute has neither a permanent faculty nor enough institutional continuity for students or faculty. We believe that the appointment of a faculty member specifically trained in GSFS and centrally appointed for the GSFS Institute would be an important first step in the journey toward the creation of a Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies program that can stand on its own, compete with other institutions, provide students with solid foundations for careers pertaining to Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies, and flourish.

The support of GSFS from the administration is one of many ways that Oberlin can show that it is congruent with its history and its social and academic values. Issues of gender, sexuality and feminism are deeply important to Oberlin students, regardless of their fields of study. We are requesting at least one continuing, full-time and full status faculty member centrally appointed in GSFS to teach an intro course and the Feminist Research Methodologies course, as well as coordinate courses in the department and advise students completing a capstone.

The Dean’s office needs to hear a student voice to make this change, and we need to gather signatures on our petition. To access the petition, check out our post on the Oberlin Underground Facebook page or email tsparks@, [email protected] or [email protected].

Thank You,

Tory Sparks

College junior and GSFS Major

– Talia Nadel

College junior and GSFS Major Representative

– Tony Moaton

College junior and GSFS Major Representative