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Photograph of Naomi Scheman

The Genius Behind GWSS Department Status

Core founding faculty member Professor Naomi Scheman has long been a pivotal and innovative force in the Department of Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies. While chairing the then Women’s Studies program from 1986-1989, she discreetly upgraded it to department status by simply ordering new stationery and correcting everyone, including deans, who continued to say “program.” Her subversive spirit in and outside of the classroom is one of the things that makes her a true GWSS treasure
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Pairing Academics with Passion

When she won the Helen Hawthorne Hartung award for her video project “Queerbaiting,” undergraduate Olivia Riley felt a sense of validation that confirmed that her passion was worthwhile and meaningful to others. A self-described “fan girl” with a critical eye, Riley brought her passion for studying gender and performativity into her final project for GWSS 1004: Screening Sex and found great success.
Three middle school students in front of Parkway Middle School talking to each other

U partnership takes a different tack in addressing achievement gap: asking kids...

GWSS Drs. Jigna Desai and Kari Smalkoski are taking an innovative approach to addressing Minnesota's persistent achievement gap - they’re asking students for help. A partnership between the U of M, St. Paul Public Schools, and the district’s after school community network Sprockets gathered input from 500 students at Parkway Montessori Middle Schoo over the last five months in hopes of developing more customized curriculums to help students become more engaged with their schoolwork. U of M students were also a big part of making this project a success.
Filmmaker Jenni Olson

The Royal Road: An Interview with Filmmaker Jenni Olson

Filmmaker and U of M alum, Jenni Olson ('91) discusses her film "The Royal Road," which chronicles Junipero Serra's Spanish colonization of California and the Mexican American War alongside intimate reflections on nostalgia, the pursuit of unavailable women, butch identity and Alfred Hitchcock's "Vertigo." A screening of the film and a conversation with Olson will be hosted by GWSS on April 26th.

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